Thursday, January 30, 2020

DEP To Unveil Draft Regs To Participate In RGGI, Capping Carbon Dioxide Emissions From Power Plants, Feb. 13 At Advisory Committee Meeting

On January 30, the Department of Environmental Protection announced it will unveil preliminary draft regulations to allow Pennsylvania to participate in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative capping greenhouse gas emissions from power plants at the February 13 meeting of the agency’s Air Quality Technical Advisory Committee.
DEP will provide details about the preliminary rulemaking language, which would design a carbon dioxide trading program in Pennsylvania using the RGGI Model Rule, but also incorporate revisions and additions specific to Pennsylvania.
RGGI is a market-based collaboration among 10 Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while generating economic growth. Gov. Tom Wolf issued an Executive Order in October 2019 instructing DEP to begin the regulatory process of participating in RGGI.
The preliminary draft is consistent with the RGGI Model Rule, but has several specific distinctions
-- Adds a waste coal set-aside allowance allocation;
-- Adds a qualifying offset for abandoned well plugging; 
-- Provides flexibility for on-site generation tied to manufacturing facilities; and 
-- Includes an auction provision, indicating that DEP will determine whether to participate in a multi-state auction based on certain factors or hold a Pennsylvania-run auction.
At this time, this preliminary draft will be presented to AQTAC for informational purposes only; a draft proposed regulation, as required by the governor’s Executive Order, will be presented to the Environmental Quality Board on July 21.
The meeting will be held in Room 105 of the Rachel Carson Building starting at 9:15 a.m.
This announcement comes on the heels of a hearing January 29 by the Senate Transportation and Environmental Committees on another multi-state initiative to address climate change-- the Transportation Climate Initiative designed to limit carbon dioxide emissions from vehicles.  Click Here for more.
It is also ahead of a scheduled February 5 hearing by the House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee on legislation that would take away DEP’s authority to adopt any regulations or programs to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.  Click Here for more.
For available handouts and more information, visit DEP’s Air Quality Advisory Committee webpage. Questions about the Committee meeting should be directed to Kirit Dalal by calling  717-772-3436 or sending email to:
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[Posted: January 30, 2020]  PA Environment Digest

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