EPA http://wkyufm.org en Kentuckians From Both Sides Plan Trip To Atlanta For EPA Hearing on Coal http://wkyufm.org/post/kentuckians-both-sides-plan-trip-atlanta-epa-hearing-coal <p>The Environmental Protection Agency will hold hearings this week on proposed regulations to limit the carbon dioxide coal-fired power plants can emit. Environmental activists and coal industry supporters are both traveling from Kentucky to Atlanta this week for the federal hearing.</p><p>The EPA’s rule would cut carbon dioxide emissions nationwide. The proposal sets emissions goals for each state, and leaves it up to individual states to decide how to achieve those goals.&nbsp; But before the rule is finalized, there are months of public comment. People can submit comments in writing, or make public statements at one of the four hearings happening this week. But Bill Bissett of the Kentucky Coal Association says it’s worth it to many to make the trek.</p><p>“I think the difference is, you can send a letter, you can send an email, but I think it’s important, one, that the people on the other side of this issue hear what we have to say as people who support coal,” said Bissett.&nbsp; “But I think also, we need to hear what they have to say. To me, it’s a very democratic principle of this country, to be heard publicly."<br /> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 20:16:48 +0000 Erica Peterson 51748 at http://wkyufm.org Kentuckians From Both Sides Plan Trip To Atlanta For EPA Hearing on Coal TVA Sued by Kentucky Coal Group, Landowners Over Plans for Natural Gas Unit at Paradise Plant http://wkyufm.org/post/tva-sued-kentucky-coal-group-landowners-over-plans-natural-gas-unit-paradise-plant <p></p><p>A lawsuit has been filed against the Tennessee Valley Authority over its plans to shut down two coal-fired units at its plant in Muhlenberg County.</p><p>The suit brought by a group of landowners and the Kentucky Coal Association argues the TVA didn’t perform a proper environmental impact statement before it decided to close the units at the Paradise Fossil Plant, and replace them with a natural gas unit scheduled to begin operations in 2017.</p><p>Meanwhile, ground continues to be cleared for the project. Speaking to reporters in June at the Paradise plant in Drakesboro, TVA transition manager Billy Sabin said the excavation stage should be completed within three months.</p><p>“That’s expected to complete sometime around the September timeframe. When that is complete, we’ll be working on getting our permits in place, and starting actual construction the end of this year to the first of next year.”</p><p>A TVA spokesman says officials are reviewing the lawsuit and will respond appropriately. The federally-owned corporation says reducing the number of coal-burning units at its Muhlenberg County plant from three to one will cut its coal reliance at the facility by half. Thu, 10 Jul 2014 20:37:02 +0000 WKU Public Radio News & Associated Press 50868 at http://wkyufm.org TVA Sued by Kentucky Coal Group, Landowners Over Plans for Natural Gas Unit at Paradise Plant Beshear Says Kentucky Needs Flexibility From EPA on New Carbon Standards http://wkyufm.org/post/beshear-says-kentucky-needs-flexibility-epa-new-carbon-standards <p>Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear says proposed federal regulations on carbon dioxide emissions from coal-fired power plants provide the state with some “flexibility” in meeting government targets.</p><p>The Environmental Protection Agency announced this month that the nation must reduce carbon emissions created by burning coal by 30 percent.</p><p>“I am glad that the EPA recognized that states need flexibility. We tried to make that point with them over and over again as they developed this rule,” said Beshear. “What I’m concerned about is they, I’m not sure they’ve given us as much flexibility as we need.”</p><p>An analysis by Bloomberg’s New Energy Finance research arm found that Kentucky could actually be able to increase its carbon emissions up to 4 percent under the EPA rules.<br /><br />“We all want a clean environment, and I think we all share that goal. It’s a difference in balance and how we phase in those standards and how we can reach them, and at the same time keep coal jobs in the coal fields and keep manufacturing jobs in Kentucky,” said Beshear.</p><p><br /> Mon, 16 Jun 2014 22:45:03 +0000 Jonathan Meador 49670 at http://wkyufm.org Beshear Says Kentucky Needs Flexibility From EPA on New Carbon Standards Kentucky Climate Policy Czar Still Going Through Over One Thousand Pages of New EPA Rules http://wkyufm.org/post/kentucky-climate-policy-czar-still-going-through-over-one-thousand-pages-new-epa-rules <p>The man who will help lead Kentucky’s effort to meet new air pollution standards says his office will stay above the political battle surrounding the issue.</p><p>Kentucky’s assistant secretary for climate policy, John Lyons, faces the unenviable task of combing through 1,400 pages of material that spell out the new federal carbon emissions rules announced this week by the Environmental Protection Agency. The regulations have been denounced this week by both of Kentucky’s U.S. Senate candidates as well as business leaders who predict doom for the state’s coal industry and overall economy.</p><p>Lyons, whose office is part of Kentucky’s Energy and Environment Cabinet, told WKU Public Radio that new federal air quality rules have been impacting the state’s energy policies for several years.</p><p>“This is the only latest in a string of environmental regulations that we have to evaluate. Of course, the politics play into that, and those things are what they are. But this Cabinet has to assess those rule-makings, and how best to adopt them—or challenge them in some cases, which is not unprecedented. We’ve challenged rules before, and likely will again at some point.”</p><p>While the new EPA standards call for a 30 percent reduction in the nation’s carbon emissions by 2030, Kentucky’s specific goal is a cut of 18.3 percent. Fri, 06 Jun 2014 16:35:02 +0000 Kevin Willis 49175 at http://wkyufm.org Kentucky Climate Policy Czar Still Going Through Over One Thousand Pages of New EPA Rules Kentucky's Democratic, GOP Legislative Leaders Unite Against New EPA Regulations http://wkyufm.org/post/kentuckys-democratic-gop-legislative-leaders-unite-against-new-epa-regulations <p></p><p>Kentucky’s two top-ranking lawmakers have &nbsp;some choice words about new coal emissions regulations announced this week by the Environmental Protection Agency.</p><p>Republican Senate President Robert Stivers and Democratic House Speaker Greg Stumbo are slamming the proposed rules, which will cut carbon dioxide emissions 30 percent by the year 2030.&nbsp; .</p><p>“You can’t formulate energy policy for a growing country like ours, if you’re not going to consider, as part of that solution, your most abundant resource," Stumbo said. "It doesn’t make any sense at all, it’s a dumbass thing to do, and you can quote me on that.”</p><p>Stumbo added that he didn’t think that the rules will affect the outcome of the November House elections, where Democrats hope to retain a narrow majority over Republicans.</p><p>The regulations are subject to public input and will be officially enacted a year from now. Thu, 05 Jun 2014 13:20:35 +0000 Jonathan Meador 49106 at http://wkyufm.org Kentucky's Democratic, GOP Legislative Leaders Unite Against New EPA Regulations New Grimes Ad Criticizes Obama Power Plant Plan http://wkyufm.org/post/new-grimes-ad-criticizes-obama-power-plant-plan <p></p><p>Democratic Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes has released a radio ad criticizing President Obama for his "pie in the sky" power plant regulations that she says will hurt Kentucky. The ad debuted Wednesday in coal regions in eastern and western Kentucky.</p><p>Grimes says in the ad that Obama's plan will lead to utility rate increases, shortages of power and the loss of more coal jobs. She says it's clear Obama has "no idea" how his plan affects the state.</p><p>The ad is a response to Obama's plan to order big cuts in pollution discharged by power plants. It represents Grimes' latest attempt to distance herself from Obama, who is unpopular in Kentucky.</p><p>She's challenging senate minority leader Mitch McConnell in the fall election. McConnell's campaign spokeswoman Allison Moore called Grimes' ad "transparently political." Thu, 05 Jun 2014 11:23:38 +0000 Associated Press 49099 at http://wkyufm.org New Grimes Ad Criticizes Obama Power Plant Plan As Land is Cleared for New Gas-Burning Plant, TVA Leaders Say Paradise Will Easily Meet EPA Rules http://wkyufm.org/post/land-cleared-new-gas-burning-plant-tva-leaders-say-paradise-will-easily-meet-epa-rules <p></p><p>Construction crews have cleared about 60 percent of the land needed to begin building a new natural gas facility at the Paradise Fossil Plant in Muhlenberg County. The new plant is scheduled to open by spring of 2017, and will take the place of two coal burning units currently in operation at the TVA facility.</p><p>Speaking to reporters Tuesday at the future site of the new gas-burning unit, Transition Manager Billy Sabin said this week’s announcement of new E.P.A. regulations on power plant emissions won’t impact the Paradise Fossil Plant, because the TVA had already decided to reduce carbon emissions at a much faster rate than what the federal government is now seeking.</p><p>“We will have a reduction of about 50 percent of coal. Because Unit 3 will continue to run, it’s going to burn about 2.7 to 3 million tons of coal a year,” Sabin said. “So it’ll be about a 50 percent reduction from what we do now.”</p><p>Sabin says the excavation stage of the new cleaner-burning gas plant project will be completed by early 2015, with construction of the facility following. He says the new facility, known as a combined-cycle gas plant, has several advantages over the older coal-burning model. Tue, 03 Jun 2014 22:50:29 +0000 Kevin Willis 49024 at http://wkyufm.org As Land is Cleared for New Gas-Burning Plant, TVA Leaders Say Paradise Will Easily Meet EPA Rules Kentucky Chamber Voices Opposition To New EPA Air Standards http://wkyufm.org/post/kentucky-chamber-voices-opposition-new-epa-air-standards <p>The Kentucky Chamber of Commerce has come out strongly against new Environmental Protection Agency regulations on greenhouse gas emissions.&nbsp; In a <a href="http://www.kychamber.com/news/2014/06/03/kentucky-chamber-statement-new-epa-carbon-emission-standards">written statement released </a>Tuesday the Chamber says Kentucky residents may be affected more than any other state in the nation by the new standards which seek to reduce carbon emissions 30 percent by the year 2030.&nbsp;<br /><br />The Chamber says the new regulations will cost jobs, drive up utility rates for homeowners and eliminate Kentucky’s competitive advantage when it comes to attracting industries with the promise of low energy prices. &nbsp;<br /><br />“Kentucky's long-standing advantage of offering low electric rates has allowed our state to recruit tens of thousands of manufacturing jobs that now support Kentucky families. Under this energy proposal, that advantage would be wiped off the board and Kentucky would suffer the consequences for generations to come,” the release stated.<br /><br />&nbsp;The EPA along with the White House and many environmental groups defend the standards, citing carbon’s effect on climate change and respiratory health.<br /> Tue, 03 Jun 2014 22:47:49 +0000 WKU Public Radio News 49023 at http://wkyufm.org Kentucky Chamber Voices Opposition To New EPA Air Standards McConnell Unveils Bill Countering New EPA Emissions Standards http://wkyufm.org/post/mcconnell-unveils-bill-countering-new-epa-emissions-standards <p></p><p>Senator Mitch McConnell is making good on his promise to introduce legislation that would block <a href="http://wkyufm.org/post/epa-unveil-new-proposal-targeting-greenhouse-gases" target="_blank">new rules announced this week</a> by the Environmental Protection Agency.</p><p>The E.P.A. rules call on power plants to reduce carbon emissions 30 percent by 2030. The move has been slammed by Republicans and some coal-state Democrats who describe the standards as federal overreach that will harm the nation’s economy while doing little to actually halt climate change.</p><p>The E.P.A says the regulations will help clean the air and establish the U.S. as a leader in the fight against climate change.</p><p>Sen. McConnell has introduced what he’s calling the Coal Country Protection Act. According to McConnell’s office, the legislation would mandate the Secretary of Labor to certify to the EPA Administrator that the new regulations will not lead to a loss of jobs.</p><p>Also under the measure, the Director of the Congressional Budget Office would have to certify that the regulations would not result in a loss of gross domestic product in the U.S. Tue, 03 Jun 2014 16:39:51 +0000 Kevin Willis 48985 at http://wkyufm.org McConnell Unveils Bill Countering New EPA Emissions Standards New EPA Rules Burn Red State Democrats http://wkyufm.org/post/new-epa-rules-burn-red-state-democrats While many on the left embraced the Environmental Protection Agency's new rules to reduce coal-burning power plant carbon emissions by 30 percent by 2030, some red state Democrats couldn't put enough distance between themselves and the Obama administration.<p>You would have had a tough time, for instance, distinguishing the reaction of Kentucky Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes from that of the man she hopes to replace, Sen. Mitch McConnell, the Senate's top Republican.<p>"President Obama's new EPA rule is more proof that Washington isn't working for Kentucky. Mon, 02 Jun 2014 22:32:00 +0000 Frank James 48975 at http://wkyufm.org New EPA Rules Burn Red State Democrats