Linda Whelan, Dynegy
Passage of a federal climate bill before 2013 is now unlikely. The emphasis now switches to increasing pressure for GHG reductions thru other avenues. But these alternatives also face challenges and uncertainties: (1) EPA regulatory efforts. EPA is going full-throttle with its Endangerment Finding, Motor Vehicle Rule, and Tailoring Rule. Next up: FIPs, CO2 BACT, and NSPS standards. But the wave of legal challenges EPA is facing is unprecedented – will EPA be able to proceed as planned? And what about Congressional proposals to delay EPA? (2) Alternative Congressional actions. Many want renewable and energy efficiency mandates in the interim, but the range of targets and technologies complicates compromise. (3) State/regional cap & trade programs. Efforts to expand the scope and stringency of exiting state/regional cap & trade and to promote new programs where none currently exist are ramping up. But fall elections could derail those efforts, considering the California ballot measure and numerous gubernatorial candidates vowing to remove their states from existing programs. (4) State regulatory mandates. A recent Colorado law — which mandates electric utilities pursue actions to address climate change and provides assurances of rate recovery – is being hailed as a model. And it has its fans. But precedent implications have raised concerns. (5) And more! To be presented in the US Climate Change Legislation Session of EUEC 2011, Feb 1-2, Phoenix, Arizona.