Biobased and Renewable Products News: Climate Change

February 26, 2015
Citigroup Announces $100 Billion Worth Of Loans For Green Projects
On February 18, 2015, the CEO of Citigroup, Michael Corbat, announced that Citigroup is planning on lending, investing, and facilitating deals of a total of $100 billion by 2025 for projects that will protect the environment. The announcement followed a previous decision to provide $50 billion in deals between 2007 and 2015, which was completed ahead of schedule, in 2013. Citigroup's view that $100 billion, a reasonable amount to facilitate the expected growth of the renewable energy industry, is a huge vote of confidence towards the continued success and expansion of ... read more >
January 15, 2015
EPA Delays Carbon Dioxide Rule
 On January 7, 2015, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that the carbon dioxide rule for new power plants under the Clean Air Act (CAA) would be delayed until mid-summer 2015.  This decision was made so that the rules for new power plants could be coordinated with the new rules for existing and modified power plants that have completion deadlines for the summer of 2015.  The rules would cut emissions of carbon dioxide from power plants with individual states responsible for how to implement the rules.  If states choose not to submit plans for how to ... read more >
January 8, 2015
EU Commission Calls For Comments On Emissions Trading Revisions
On December 19, 2014, the European Union (EU) Commission called for comments on EU Emission Trading System Directive revisions. The revisions include changes to how carbon allowances will be made available to participants in the EU's emissions trading system after 2020 to reduce GHG emissions by at least 40 percent in 2030 compared to 1990. The 2030 framework for climate and energy also proposes the use of 400 million carbon allowances to create a fund for renewable energy and carbon sequestration projects, and the use of two percent of allowances to finance energy efficiency and energy ... read more >
November 7, 2014
DOE Releases Climate Plans
On October 31, 2014, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) released two plans related to climate change. The Strategic Sustainability Performance Plan and the Climate Change Adaptation Plan are intended to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and prepare for flooding, rising sea levels, and extreme temperatures/weather patterns. These plans come five years after the 2009 Executive Order on Environmental, Energy, and Economic Performance that set energy, climate, and environmental goals for government agencies. The release of the plans gave Energy Secretary Dr. Ernest Moniz an opportunity to ... read more >
October 31, 2014
EU Leaders Agree On Climate And Energy Policy Framework For 2030
During a summit in Brussels on October 23-24, 2014, European Union (EU) leaders agreed to a blueprint to guide climate and energy policy through 2030. The overall goals of the blueprint are to achieve a 40 percent emissions reduction by 2030, relative to 1990 emissions levels, as well as a target of 27 percent for total energy consumption in the EU being provided by renewable sources by 2030. The EU already has a 20 percent emissions reduction target for 2020. The target is expected to help build and maintain momentum for the larger 2030 emissions goal. Individual countries will not be ... read more >
August 15, 2014
Group Of Senators Weigh In On Biogenic Carbon Regulations
On August 7, 2014, a group of nine Democratic Senators led by Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) sent a letter to the EPA Administrator, Gina McCarthy, on the treatment of biogenic carbon emissions from stationary sources. The other eight Senators who signed the letter are: Tim Johnson (D-SD); Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND); Ron Wyden (D-OR); Maria Cantwell (D-WA); Al Franken (D-MN); Patty Murray (D-WA); Joe Donnelly (D-IN); and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN). The letter comes at a time when EPA is working to issue in final a rulemaking providing guidelines for such treatment. In their letter, the Senators caution ... read more >
August 1, 2014
EPA Holds Listening Sessions On Carbon Proposal
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) held its first "listening sessions" this week on its controversial proposed rule to reduce carbon dioxide at existing power plants. BRAG has previously reported on the proposed rule. A copy of the proposed rule is available online. The listening sessions took place on July 29 and 30, 2014, in Atlanta, Georgia, Denver, Colorado, and Washington, D.C., and will take place on August 1, 2014, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. During the sessions, EPA heard from a wide range of stakeholders on both sides of the issue, including industry ... read more >
July 18, 2014
White House Weighs Higher EPA 2014 RFS Targets To Help Climate Efforts
On July 15, 2014, Inside EPA reported that "the White House is examining options for reversing EPA's proposed cuts to several renewable fuel standard (RFS) production targets in order to promote biofuels that create fewer greenhouse gases (GHGs) than conventional fuels, informed sources say, as part of the Obama administration's broader efforts to combat climate change." The article also quotes sources stating: "[F]igures under discussion between administration officials and industry representatives include raising the renewable fuel target -- largely met with corn ... read more >
June 27, 2014
Supreme Court Affirms EPA’s Power To Regulate Carbon Dioxide Under The Clean Air Act
The U.S. Supreme Court issued a ruling on Monday, June 23, 2014, which upheld the authority of EPA to regulate carbon dioxide under the Clean Air Act (CAA), but with limitations. The Court held that EPA may require permits and carbon control efforts for large stationary sources that emit large quantities of carbon dioxide. The emission of certain quantities of other regulated greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions -- not carbon dioxide alone -- must trigger the requirements, however. The Court held that EPA went impermissibly beyond its authority to regulate carbon dioxide under the CAA when, under ... read more >
June 27, 2014
Scientists Weigh In On Biogenic Carbon Accounting Debate
On June 19, 2014, over 90 scientists sent a letter to EPA urging the Agency to move forward under its Tailoring Rule by "1) moving beyond the flawed assumption that bioenergy is inherently carbon neutral; 2) rejecting the regional accounting method originally proposed in the draft Accounting Framework; and 3) ensuring a scientifically sound methodology for determining the carbon emissions impact to the atmosphere from burning long-recovery woody biomass feedstocks -- most notably, whole trees." A copy of the letter is available online. There were significant actions on this issue ... read more >
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