If the video is not visible, please accept all cookies to enable the player.

Traditionally, regulatory goals included ensuring electric system reliability, promoting resource adequacy, and delivering lower energy bills for ratepayers. Now, utility regulatory commissions and energy planning bodies need to work with environmental regulators and utilities to achieve affordable environmental compliance and meet these traditional goals at the same time.

By engaging with utilities and environmental regulators on these topics, utility commissions will be better able to evaluate a wider array of potential compliance options, and to strike their preferred balance of cost and other policy goals, including the most affordable compliance scenarios associated with various Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) public health and environmental regulations.

In this webinar, Ken Colburn and David Farnsworth from the Regulatory Assistance Project explore how public health and environmental considerations will need to increasingly factor into energy policy decisions, and vice versa. They describe the inherent flexibilities (and thus a degree of choice) in new and pending public health and environmental regulations, including federal water, solid waste, and air regulations that will affect the energy sector:

Clean Water Act

  • Cooling Water Intake Structures at Existing Facilities – CWA Section 316(b)
  • Effluent Limitations Guidelines and Standards

Resource Conservation and Recovery Act

  • Coal Combustion Residuals

Clean Air Act

  • National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) Particulates
  • The Cross-State Air Pollution Rule Schedule (CSAPR)
  • Mercury/Air Toxics Rule (MATS)
  • New Source Performance Standards for new and existing sources of CO2.

Special attention is given to New Source Performance Standards for CO2.

Mr. Colburn and Mr. Farnsworth preview the forthcoming RAP paper Further Preparing for EPA Regulations, which will be available in mid-November. Its predecessor, Preparing for EPA Regulations provides initial steps for developing an in-depth understanding of EPA rules and regulations. Further Preparing for EPA Regulations will examine the general structures of new and pending water, solid waste, and air regulations — with a focus on compliance flexibility.