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Obama to move forward on limits on power plant emissions

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The Obama administration is expected to announce on Friday that it will move toward setting limits on green house gas emissions for new and existing power plants in the U.S., the New York Times reports. The limits for new natural gas plants will be at 1,000 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions per megawatt hour and new coal plants will have to hit 1,100 pounds of carbon dioxide.

An average new coal plant can emit around 1,800 pounds of carbon dioxide per hour. Which means that new coal plants in the U.S. will either need to use advanced technology for capturing or storing carbon emissions — representing a major boon for those companies selling this next-gen tech — or there will be considerably less coal plants built in the U.S. going forward. The move will be highly controversial in states with large coal industries.

What can coal teach us about the cloud?

Emissions limits for existing power plants — which are more controversial — will probably be set over the coming months and years. That will be a more difficult task, and the administration plans a year-long “listening tour” to figure out what those emissions limits will be.

This announcement is important for a couple reasons. It shows that the Obama administration isn’t backing down from its plan to deal with climate change. It also could represent a major market trigger for new emissions reductions technologies, like carbon capture and storage, which has proven uneconomical for many years.

The administration’s EPA administrator Gina McCarthy is supposed to make the announcement at the National Press Club on Friday.

6 Responses to “Obama to move forward on limits on power plant emissions”

  1. Good. It’s time that downstream impacts and costs of coal burning be factored into the equation. Remember how even Jim Roberts (CEO of Duke Energy) acknowledged how destructive coal burning is.

    It’s ironic that we hear about “Clean Coal”, but when we consider clean-coal-compatible regulations, it’s considered unfair.

    Also, how can we seriously ask other countries to clean-up their acts if we don’t?

  2. Wally Wanks

    Climate change is a SCAM invented by ENRON founder Ken Lay, the Rothschild’s and Al Gore. If you are still a consensus fool…. the earth was flat by consensus! You exhale what they consider a polutant… I am all for cleaner emmissions.. but when you get stupid and start listening to scammers for your science….you are a fool.. 5x more polarbears this year… 60% more ice on caps and record time…. all models failed to show 15 yr cooling trend and sun activity is low….which by the way is 98% in control off the earths temp…. when fools try to get you to pay a tax to regulate the sun…. shoot yourself……

  3. RobPaulGru

    The total destruction of our economy was close with Obamacare, but this should be the final nail. Mission accomplished mr. 0. We already have 50 million in poverty. Maybe you should think about how much harm this will cause them.