27 Mar 2012:
New EPA Rules Will Limit
CO2 Emissions from Power Plants
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is expected to impose a limit on greenhouse gas emissions from new power plants, a strict new regulation that could prevent conventional coal-fired power plants from being built. In new rules to be announced as soon as Tuesday, the EPA will require that new power plants generate no more than 1,000 pounds of carbon dioxide per megawatt of electricity produced. While the typical natural gas plant — which emits 800 to 859 pounds of CO2 per megawatt — would meet the new requirement, coal plants, with an average of 1,768 pounds of CO2 per megawatt, would fail to meet the standard, according to the Washington Post
. The rules would exempt coal plants that are already permitted and scheduled to begin construction within a year. About 20 additional projects are seeking permits, two of which would meet the new standard because they would employ pollution control technologies. Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club, hailed the rule, saying the it marked the “end of an era” during which coal has provided about 40 percent of U.S. electricity.
Yale Environment 360 is
a publication of the
Yale School of Forestry
& Environmental Studies
Yale Environment 360
articles are now available in Spanish and Portuguese on Universia
, the online educational network. Visit the site.
Business & Innovation
Policy & Politics
Pollution & Health
Science & Technology
Antarctica and the Arctic
Central & South America
Photographer Robert Wintner documents the exquisite beauty and biodiversity of Cuba’s coral reefs, which are largely intact thanks to stifled coastal development in the communist nation. View the gallery.
is now available for mobile devices at e360.yale.edu/mobile
The Warriors of Qiugang
, a Yale Environment 360
video, chronicles a Chinese village’s fight against a polluting chemical plant. It was nominated for a 2011 Academy Award for Best Documentary Short.
Watch the video.
Top Image: aerial view of Iceland
. © Google & TerraMetrics.
A three-part series Tainted Harvest
looks at the soil pollution crisis in China, the threat it poses to the food supply, and the complexity of any cleanup. Read the series.