Next Monday, the Obama administration is scheduled to announce proposed new rules limiting greenhouse gas emissions from existing power plants under the Clean Air Act. The new rules are widely anticipated as a cornerstone of the president's climate change strategy and are likely to face legal challenges.
While the announcement is pending, it appears that the new rules may apply broadly to the electricity industry while allowing states flexibility in developing their plans to implement the new rules and possibly cooperate with other states. They may also recognize and give credit to energy efficiency as a source of reducing emissions.
It's uncertain how much reduction in CO2 emissions the new rules will require and when they must be achieved. We'll be reporting on the proposed rules at the June 10 Council meeting, so stay tuned.