Confidence Crisis Emerges As Biden's EPA Pushes "Unproven Technologies" To Decarbonize Grid, Power Sector Warns

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by Tyler Durden
Thursday, Aug 10, 2023 - 09:45 AM

The top lobbying group for US power plants penned a lengthy letter to President Biden's Environmental Protection Agency, arguing that the administration's aggressive plan to curb greenhouse gas emissions from natural gas-fired plants is "unworkable" because it relies on "unproven technologies."

Edison Electric Institute (EEI), whose members include Consolidated Edison Inc., Dominion Energy Inc., FirstEnergy Corp., and Southern Company, said the EPA's "rulemaking record simultaneously downplays the various infrastructure challenges to deploying" carbon-capture systems (CCS) and hydrogen, "while overplaying the current state of deployment and demonstration of each technology." 

EEI continued, "Given these realities, neither CCS nor hydrogen blending are adequately demonstrated today as they are not deployable, available, or affordable across the entirety of the industry, and the attendant supporting infrastructure will take more time than EPA predicts to deploy. This assessment factors in the timelines that EPA proposes for standards that may not be applicable until several years in the future. Accordingly, unit owners and operators have significant concerns about the achievability of the proposed standards." 

EEI's members power the homes of nearly 250 million Americans and operate in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The power industry supports seven million jobs nationwide, and EEI's members invest $140 billion annually into improving the grid. 

"As we outline in these comments, electric companies are not confident that the new technologies EPA has designated to serve as the basis for proposed standards for new and existing fossil-based generation will satisfy performance and cost requirements on the timelines that EPA projects," the letter pointed out. 

The lobbying group warned: "This will impact electric companies' efforts to deliver affordable and reliable electricity to customers."

EEI's warning comes as the Biden administration wants to achieve a net-zero emissions power grid by 2035. Climate alarmists in the White House allege decarbonization efforts will combat global climate change. 

The race to decarbonize the power sector has already left the nation's largest grid, PJM Interconnection, with increasing reliability risks

Meanwhile, the EPA's new vehicle emissions standards under the Clean Air Act have also come into question: 

"You just don't even know if it's gonna save carbon emissions, which is the point of the whole exercise," said Rupert Darwall, Senior Fellow at the RealClear Foundation.

Why would Biden's EPA introduce power sector requirements that EEI labels as "unproven technologies"? It raises genuine concerns about the Biden administration's intentions regarding the stability of the power grid. But don't worry because if you dare question this, you are labeled a 'climate denier.' 

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Here's EEI's letter in full: