EPA defers action on petitions regarding biomass, WtE

By Erin Voegele | January 17, 2017

The U.S. EPA has published a notice of final action denying petitions for reconsideration and petitions for administrative stay regarding emissions guidelines for greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and compliance times for electric utility generating units, except to the extent they raise topics concerning biomass and waste-to-energy (WtE). The agency said it is deferring action on petitions to the extent that they raised these two topics.

The EPA published its final Carbon Pollution Emission Guidelines for Existing Stationary Sources: Electric Utility Generating Units in October 2015. According to the agency, it received 38 petitions for reconsideration of the rule, along with 22 petitions for an administrative stay of this rule.

In a notice published in the Federal Register, the EPA said it denied 31 of the petitions for reconsideration in full, and denied petitions filed by the Commonwealth of Kentucky and Oglethorpe Power Corp. for reconsideration, except to the extent they raised the topic of biomass. The agency said it is “deferring with respect to biomass pending our further ongoing consideration of the underlying issue of whether and how to account for biomass when co-firing with fossil fuels. Other petitions addressed biomass and WtE include those filed by Biogenic CO2 Coalition, Biomass Power Association, the Energy Recovery Council, the Local Government Coalition for Renewable Energy, and the National Alliance of Forest Owners.

Additional information is available on the Federal Register website.