Saturday, July 28, 2012

New York Adopts CCS Performance Standard

Last March, the US EPA proposed a New Source Performance Standard (NSPS) for new power plants which would effectively require that coal-fired units come equipped with CCS technology (see Calls Intensify for More Global Action on CCS, 5/16).  Now the state of New York has adopted an even tougher standard, beating the federal government to the punch.  Specifically, in June the state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) adopted regulation 6 NYCRR Part 251 (as mandated by the Power NY Act of 2011).  This rule requires most new or expanded fossil-fuel fired plants to meet either an emission output limit of 925 pounds of CO2 per MWh, or a fuel input limit of 120 pounds per MMBTU (by contrast, the draft national NSPS would impose a limit of 1,000 pounds of CO2 per MWh).  The practical effect of this new regulation will be to require new coal-fired plants and significant coal plant expansions in New York to be fitted with CCS.  The rule came into force on July 12.

As for the proposed NSPS, an extended public comment period is currently underway.

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