WASHINGTON, D.C. — Revised emissions limits will soon take effect for new coal-fired power plants.  On Wednesday, the federal Environmental Protection Agency published those new rules in the Federal Register.

Second District Congresswoman Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) is just one of the many coal country critics of the new performance standards.  She said the regulations will effectively block construction of all new plants.

“These standards are unmeetable,” Capito said on Thursday’s MetroNews “Talkline.”  “It’s just, again, the drumbeat of the war on coal and the absolute different attacks the (Obama) Administration has put forward to shut down an all of the above energy program.”

With the regulations, new coal-fired power plants will be limited to emissions of 1,100 pounds of CO2 per megawatt hour.  In order to meet that those levels, new plants would have to implement still-developing carbon capture technology.

Additionally, natural gas-fired power plants will have to keep emissions to below 1,000 pounds of CO2 per megawatt hour.

Since September, the EPA has received more than 2.5 million comments on the emissions proposals for new plants.

Proposed emissions limits for existing coal-fired power plants are scheduled to be released by June.  Public hearings on those possible limits will begin later this month.  EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy has said the EPA would not call for existing coal plants to use carbon capture and sequestration technology.

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Comments

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  • Jay

    Obama systematically is destroying the economy of this country and the Democrats & Republicans, do nothing to stop him.

  • Mark Miller

    So what does Cecil Roberts and Mike Trumpka
    have to say to their union members. These two should be fired ! Someone with West Virginia values should replace them, who is content to live in this state.

  • Wiliam

    Why do you hate coal miners

  • Aaron

    This is why AEP and other industry officials have historically supported Cap and Trade. Were it in place, it would have allowed plants that cannot meet the new requirements to purchase additional emissions. Instead, we are now faced with requirements that are difficult to meet and will cost more jobs than a carbon tax would. It's time that WV leaders adhere to the advice of Bob Byrd and get back to looking to the future.

    • Scott

      The future is very very bleak in W V thanks to people who choose to shut down the only industry that paid the bills for WV.

    • Scott

      Keep hearing how North is booming but revenues and taxes for state are in a terrible shape.Maybe North needs to step up and do what coal has always done which is carry this state.The way I see it is everybody better get out while they can.

    • The bookman

      Aaron,

      You know the cost of those credits would have just increased to the point of freezing out the coal industry anyway. Shrinking from the war on coal would only be viewed as a sign of weakness, and participating in Cap and Trade would only have allowed those trading the credits to add to the overall cost of energy until Coal could not continue to compete in that market. I am surprised you would support a program based on the fraud that is man made global warming. The fight will be won only when the current administration and those that support an anti fossil fuel energy policy lose power and majority influence. You don't win by giving up. From here, that is losing. Remember, they will come for natural gas when coal is no longer an electricity generation option.

      • Aaron

        First and foremost, while I don't believe man is completely responsible for global warming, I know we play a role in climate change. There is too much science out there to dispute that fact.

        I also know emissions require some restrictions. I live in the shadow of John Amos and I know how bad emissions were before they erected the new stacks and scrubbers.

        Appalachian Power did not put those stacks up because they suddenly felt bad about spewing coal ash over 4 or 5 communities, they did it because someone, somewhere knew that if they didn't take measures to reduce emissions regardless of the cost of construction, they would pay in the end by either being shut down or in fines and penalties.

        You can think that once Obama is gone from office that the 'war on coal' will cease but we both know that's not likely. One way or another, liberals will continue the assault on coal via the court systems.

        Whether it's through regulation cost, fines and penalties or a tax via cap and trade, coal fired power plants will see increased cost.

        As such, AEP and other energy providers must make the most viable business decision for their future. Cap and Trade is the only option that allows the market to determine the cost and provide stability. You know this as it's basic microeconomics.

        That's not surrender, losing or giving up, it's good business sense and until those on the right learns that, the left will maintain power and the upper hand regardless of which party has a majority in Washington.

        • The bookman

          All good points, hope you are faring well in this water crisis given your location. In terms of the climate, man has little impact. The sun is the culprit, and time will bear that out, as temps are not increasing globally, but stable... The long term prediction is a pivot to cooler times over this century and I'm sure the libs will cook up some science to blame man. Good luck to you!

          • Aaron

            Generally speaking I do not debate global warming or abortion, not because I don't have an opinion, but because you can rarely if ever change someone's mind.

            You claim rather emphatically that climate change has nothing to do with my humans. That's your opinion and you're certainly entitled to.

            While I don't believe that man is the primary cause of climate change, I do believe just our mere existence has an effect.

            At any rate, mine and your opinions are basically irrelevant. The scientific community by and large accepts that man does indeed have an effect on our climate and that among other things carbon emissions play a role in weather patterns.

            You can foolheartedly believe that a Republican victory in the 2016 primary election or even a Republican takeover of the Senate this year will change the direction of policy on climate change if you wish. I believe it is akin to burying your head in the sand but such a belief is your right.

            The science community overwhelmingly has stated a belief regarding climate change. Environmental groups will use their collective opinions to challenge anything they believe will add further to climate change in the court system.

            Unlike you, the court systems cannot rely on their opinions to come to a conclusion, they have to rely on the data that is available. And any small chance that you do get a judge in a state court to agree with you, those groups was simply challenge the decision to the point that they will bankrupt the plaintiffs if they lose.

            That is the direction the president set in 2000, and it will continue ling after he's gone. Like it or not the use of fossil fuels to provide energy has a limited, bleak future.

            That does not mean there is no future. AEP, Exxon, Chevron, Duke energy, Dominion power, and multiple other energy providers recognize this. They know that the bell has been rung on emissions control and as such there trying to get out in front of it.

            They understand that emmissions will be controlled in one manner or another. Either through regulations with fines associated with excess emissions, through Carbon credits issued by the government, or through a text system in the form of cap and trade.

            Anyone has ever taken microeconomics 101 understands which system provides the cheapest, most efficient manner and in providing the best outcome for the industry affected. While a tax via cap and trade will create a deadweight loss, he loss is less destructive than strict regulations carbon credits.

            A tax allows the market dictated by supply and demand to find the equilibrium price which creates the most efficient use of carbon emissions possible. Like it or not that's where industry is headed in the sooner the right understands that, the less likely we are to face in shortage problems in the future.

            Unlike social issues which polarizes Washington, this is one issue that should not be political and there should not be this type of debate over it.

          • Aaron

            Thank you for asking. I've been out of town so I haven't felt the strain too much yet. Hopefully it will end soon.