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Offshore Wind Projects Receive Boost from Massachusetts and Biden Administration

LCG, March 31, 2021--The Governor of Massachusetts signed legislation last Friday that authorizes the state to direct utilities to purchase an additional 2,400 MW of offshore wind energy by 2027.

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NV Energy's Greenlink Nevada Transmission Project Approved by PUCN

LCG, March 25, 2021--The Public Utilities Commission of Nevada (PUCN) on Monday approved proceeding with NV Energy's Greenlink Nevada transmission and renewable energy initiative. NV Energy's planned investment in Greenlink is over $2.5 billion.

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Industry News

EPA Updates 'New Source Review' Rules

LCG, June 13, 2002--The White House said today that the EPA will issue revised rules concerning the installation of emission controls for power plants that are upgraded or expanded.

EPA Administrator Christine Todd Whitman said of the rules, "The need for reform is clear and has broad-based support." The rules were strongly favored by a range of utility and industry groups, who have complained that rules under the EPA's New Source Review program, started during the Clinton administration, have been unclear, leading to inconsistencies in enforcement.

Controversy has surrounded which repairs to a plant represent maintenance under the program, and which mean a change in the plant's size or operating characteristics. According to Whitman, "Our review clearly established that some aspects of the New Source Review program have deterred companies from implementing projects that would increase energy efficiency and decrease air pollution."

Under the New Source Review program of the last 10 years, an analysis was required before repairs could be classified as "routine," and therefore would not trigger the need for emission controls. Refineries as well as generating facilities may see improvements in reliability and efficiency as repairs pick up in frequency, another EPA official said.

Strongly negative reactions to the Bush administration announcement came from environmental groups and some Democratic legislators, including the majority leader, Sen. Tom Daschle, D-S.D. Some are concerned that coal plants in the Midwest will cause more serious air pollution in the Northeast under the revised rules.

Philip Clapp, president of the National Environmental Trust, said that the EPA "has no calculations on increased pollution or public health impacts." Clapp said that the new rules will cause most repairs to be considered routine. "You can do anything but tear the plant down and keep your exemption, so these plants will never be cleaned up," he said.

The rules allow baseline emission allowance standards to be calculated based on any consecutive 24-month period in the past 10 years. This may mean that some power plants will be able to produce more power than they have recently, without running up against emission limits.
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