ERCC asks for extension on EPA Clean Power Plan comments

Group says proposal is too complex to digest in 120 days

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As expected, the Electric Reliability Coordinating Council (ERCC) has asked the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to extend the comment period of the Clean Power Plan by at least 60 days.

The group of power generating companies that favors “commonsense interpretation” of the Clean Air Act filed its formal request for an extension July 8, according to GenerationHub. The letter was signed by ERCC Director Scott Segal.

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In June EPA unveiled the Obama administration plan to curb carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants 30 percent by 2030. The current comment deadline is October 16.

ERCC said that’s simply not enough time to understand such a far-reaching and complex proposal. “It is no exaggeration to say that the Proposal seeks to create a regulatory scheme that touches on virtually every detail of how electricity is generated, dispatched, and used by individual companies and households—and the Proposal creates new EPA oversight of every state, local, and Tribal authority involved in those complex issues,” ERCC said in a letter to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy.

The complete proposal covers nearly 130 pages of text in the Federal Register and 376 pages of regulatory impact analysis. “Notwithstanding the breadth of coverage, cost and complexity of the rule, EPA has provided only 120 days for regulated sources and the public to analyze the rule and supporting documents, and provide comment to EPA,” ERCC said.

‘Such an extension [of at least 60 days] would be consistent with recent EPA actions on other controversial proposals and would allow stakeholders and interested to parties to develop comments that protect their legal interests and inform EPA’s effort to craft to a final rule that is workable and reduces risks and costs,” ERCC’s Segal said in the letter.

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