Boiler MACT Status UpdateJanuary 30, 2012
The EPA’s Boiler MACT rules were reconsidered and stayed after their publication in March 2011. This article provides analysis of the federal court case that overturned the stay, and details on the EPA’s reconsidered rules which are now available for comment.
Gov. Walker Highlights Regulatory Review Board in State of the StateJanuary 26, 2012
Governor Walker focused on job creation and improving the state’s jobs climate in his second State of the State Address. As part of the efforts to improve the state’s job climate, Walker announced he was appointing new members to the Small Business Regulatory Review Board, which has the authority to review every administrative rule.
January Natural Resources Board MeetingJanuary 26, 2012
The Wisconsin Natural Resources Board met January 24th and 25th in Madison. Important topics addressed by the Board included approval of an economic impact solicitation process, a reduction of the bear harvest quota for 2012, and discussions of EPA-identified deficiencies in the state’s water program and frac sand mining.
CSAPR Stay May Affect Regional Haze RequirementsJanuary 24, 2012
The stay of the Cross State Air Pollution Rule by the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit casts uncertainty over an EPA proposal to allow states to rely on the Cross State Air Pollution Rule to meet the Clean Air Act’s regional haze requirements. The regional haze program modifications, announced the same day as the stay, are now uncertain.
North Dakota Sues Minnesota Over Coal Power RestrictionsJanuary 23, 2012
North Dakota has filed suit against Minnesota in the US District Court for the District of Minnesota, claiming Minnesota's Next Generation Energy Act of 2007, which bars utilities from buying power from new plants that would raise carbon dioxide emissions, violates the U.S. Constitution by restricting trade between states and encroaching on Congress' power to regulate interstate power sales and carbon dioxide emissions.
Renewable or Not? How States Count HydropowerJanuary 23, 2012
Midwest Energy News recently published an interesting article discussing how different states treat hydroelectric power when it comes to renewable electricity standards. As the article explains, although hydropower is a renewable energy, it does not always count toward a state’s renewable electricity standard.
BLM Seeks Comments on Solar and Wind Energy Public Land LeasesJanuary 20, 2012
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) published an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR) on December 29, 2011, taking the first step toward establishing a competitive process for leasing public lands for solar and wind energy development. The ANPR asks for public comments to assist the BLM as it drafts a proposed rule that is meant to foster the growth of renewable energy by establishing an efficient competitive process for issuing right-of-way (ROW) leases for solar and wind energy development.
Assembly to Vote on Mining BillJanuary 19, 2012
The Assembly is expected to debate and pass Assembly Bill 426 on January 26th. Supporters of the bill argue that the bill is needed due to the uncertainty of current permitting laws and rules implemented by the Department of Natural Resources, which they say discourage investment in mining. Moreover, proponents argue that the new law will provide jobs without harming the environment. Environmental groups oppose the legislation arguing that it will harm the environment.
First Data from Mandatory GHG Reporting Rule ReleasedJanuary 18, 2012
Mandated by the FY2008 Consolidated Appropriations Act, the EPA launched the GHG Reporting Program in October 2009, requiring the reporting of GHG data from large emission sources across a range of industry sectors, as well as suppliers of products that would emit GHGs if released or combusted. The first data reported under that rule has now been released to the public in an easy to use database.
The EPA’s online data publication tool allows users to view and sort GHG data for calendar year 2010, the first year data was collected under the mandatory rule, from over 6,700 facilities in a variety of ways—including by facility, location, industrial sector, and the type of GHG emitted. For example, the data set includes information on 136 GHG emitters in the state of Wisconsin.