Underutilized natural gas power plants can cut greenhouse gas emissions affordably if they are used to displace higher emitting coal-fired power plants, according to a new study from Clean Air Task Force (CATF).
The report says EPA can use Clean Air Act section 111(d) that results in displacement of power generation from the highest-emitting sources.
The report was authored by Conrad Schneider, Advocacy Director for CATF based on economic modeling analysis prepared by The NorthBridge Group. The report recommends EPA tap this potential by issuing carbon pollution standards and offer states a model emission credit trading rule to facilitate implementation.
The NorthBridge Group analysis shows that the proposed policy could cut power plant carbon pollution by 27 percent from 2005 levels by 2020 while holding increases in electric rates to 2 percent.
The report recommends that EPA:
• Set separate emission rate standards for fossil-fueled utility boilers at 1,450 lbs CO2/MWh and natural gas combustion turbines at 1,100 lbs CO2/MWh; and • Facilitate least-cost implementation for states by issuing a model interstate emission credit trading rule with the opportunity to use the free allocation of allowances to protect electric retail ratepayers of all classes.
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