Pennsylvania Coal Alliance files comments on EPA’s GHG rules

The Pennsylvania Coal Alliance submitted comments on Monday to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) over the proposed emission standards affecting new coal-fired power plants.

In the comments the Alliance states that the standards would have a negative economic impact and the technology required has not been proven to reduce carbon emissions.

Coal is the leading source of domestic power produced nationally and in Pennsylvania, where it accounts for roughly 40 percent of the state’s annual electricity, according to the Alliance.

The comments pointed out that EPA’s proposed regulations are unachievable with the available technology. In addition, the standards would require coal-fired power plants to adopt expensive carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) technology.

According to a DOE deputy assistant secretary, CCS technology would increase wholesale electricity prices by 70 to 80 percent.

“The EPA’s standards require power plants to operate at emission levels that are just not attainable with the technology that is available to us,” said Alliance CEO John Pippy. “They would force the nation to essentially abandon its most reliable and affordable energy source. As a result, this policy will harm the economy by eliminating family-sustaining jobs and causing electricity prices to increase substantially.”

The Alliance went on to say that the standards exceed EPA’s authority under Section 111 of the Clean Air Act (CAA). The EPA is encouraged to work with energy stakeholders to develop achievable standards.

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