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OpenMarket: Energy and Environment

  • Air Conditioning Can Help Fight COVID-19—If Federal Policy Allows It To

    July 2, 2020
    COVID-19 persists into the time of year when most Americans rely on air conditioning, so many are asking whether cranking up the cold air helps or hurts in the fight against spreading the virus. The answer is that air conditioning can provide substantial protection from coronavirus, but we need to make sure that the federal government’s pursuit of energy efficiency and climate change policy is not an impediment.
  • Axios Spins IEA CO2 Report

    June 26, 2020
    Axios Generate on June 26 concludes its first article with a “bonus chart” from the International Energy Agency’s recent report, Global CO2 emissions in 2019. According to Axios, the chart shows that “Europe leads the world in emissions decline.” Not so fast. The European Union contains 27 countries. Which country leads the world in reducing emissions? The United States is undisputed champion.
  • Tax Breaks for Wind and Solar—Bad Energy Policy, Bad Post-Coronavirus Recovery Policy

    June 26, 2020
    The House of Representatives’ $1.5 trillion dollar infrastructure package is being sold to the public as a post-coronavirus job creation bill. It now includes the sweeping renewable energy subsidies, including measures extending the investment tax credits for wind and solar energy. This is both bad energy policy and bad jobs policy.
  • Will Senator Udall Accept the Blame for Methylene Chloride Deaths?

    June 26, 2020
    ​​​​​​​Hearings for Nancy Beck’s nomination to chair the Consumer Product Safety Commission took place last week at which several Senate Democrats launched outrageous and unfair attacks. Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.) hit a new low when he basically accused Beck of murder because he asserted that the EPA did not move swiftly enough to ban paint strippers containing methylene chloride.
  • Supreme Court Decision Big Win for Energy—and America

    June 15, 2020
    Today the Supreme Court handed down a 7-2 decision allowing the construction of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, a 600-mile project bringing natural gas produced in West Virginia eastward into Virginia and North Carolina. The case represents a big win for energy dominance, jobs, affordable energy, and most importantly the rule of law.
  • Criteria Pollutant Emissions and Precursors Decline 7 Percent Under Trump

    June 12, 2020
    The EPA today released its annual report on air quality, tracking the nation’s progress through 2019. The EPA reports that under President Trump (2017-2019), combined emissions of criteria pollutants and their precursors declined by 7 percent.
  • EPA Proposes Rule to Increase Consistency and Transparency of Benefit-Cost Analysis

    June 5, 2020
    The Environmental Protection Agency on June 4 released a proposed rule to increase the “consistency and transparency” of benefit-cost analysis (BCA) in Clean Air Act (CAA) regulations. The proposal would require all future “significant” CAA regulations to be accompanied by a BCA, and all BCAs to be conducted according to “best practices.”
  • Trump Executive Order to Expedite Project Approvals

    June 5, 2020
    President Trump on June 4 issued an Executive Order intended to expedite the federal approval process for major infrastructure projects. “Economic Recovery from the COVID-19 Emergency by Expediting Infrastructure Investments and Other Activities” seeks to put people back to work by getting transportation, energy, and other big construction projects underway as quickly as possible.
  • EPA Finalizes Rule Limiting State Abuses of Clean Water Act to Block Fossil Energy Projects

    June 1, 2020
    On June 1, the EPA issued a final rule clarifying that the Clean Water Act cannot be used by states to block energy projects based on climate or any other grounds unrelated to water quality. This rule should help remove roadblocks to many such projects that both create jobs and keep energy affordable for homes and businesses.
  • EPA Removes One Hurdle to Alaska’s Pebble Mine, but Others Remain

    June 1, 2020
    On May 28, the EPA notified the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that it will not challenge its ongoing review of the Pebble Mine in Alaska at this time. Thus, the Army Corps can continue reviewing the project’s Environmental Impact Statement pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The EIS review and subsequent final decision on the mine permit are expected by the end of the year.

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