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IPFS News Link • Energy

Largest US Grid Supplier Warns of an Energy Shortage Due to Undeliverable Mandates

•, By Mish

Before reviewing the PJM Interconnect February 2023 report, let's take a look at policies and regulations.

Policies and Regulations

EPA Coal Combustion Residuals (CCR): The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) promulgated national minimum criteria for existing and new coal combustion residuals (CCR) landfills and existing and new CCR surface impoundments. This led to a number of facilities, approximately 2,700 MW in capacity, indicating their intent to comply with the rule by ceasing coal-firing operations, which is reflected in this study.

EPA Effluent Limitation Guidelines (ELG): The EPA updated these guidelines in 2020, which triggered the announcement by Keystone and Conemaugh facilities (about 3,400 MW) to retire their coal units by the end of 2028. 14 Importantly, but not included in this study, the EPA is planning to propose a rule to strengthen and possibly broaden the guidelines applicable to waste (in particular water) discharges from steam electric generating units. The EPA is expecting this to impact coal units by potentially requiring investments when plants renew their discharge permits, and extending the time that plants can operate if they agree to a retirement date.

EPA Good Neighbor Rule (GNR): This proposal requires units in certain states to meet stringent limits on emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx), which, for certain units, will require investment in selective catalytic reduction to reduce NOx. For purposes of this study, it is assumed that unit owners will not make that investment and will retire approximately 4,400 MW of units instead. Please note that the EPA plans on finalizing the GNR in March, which may necessitate reevaluation of this assumption.