The Environmental Protection Agency's 2013 proposal to lower the 2014 renewable volume obligations for motor vehicle fuel would undermine efforts aimed at tackling climate change and hurt producers of low-carbon fuels, biofuel supporters said. The Renewable Fuel Standard is a potent tool in the fight against climate change, and it prods oil companies to invest more in biofuels, supporters said. "It is disheartening to see how much potential to slow climate change we are missing out on by not doing this," said Ryan Fitzpatrick, an adviser at Third Way.
Carol Browner, a member of the leadership council of Nuclear Matters and former administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, said failing to include nuclear power to help fight climate change would be "irresponsible." Nuclear energy provides 60% of carbon-free power in the country, and taking it out of the energy mix would make it difficult for the government to meet its carbon emissions goals, Browner argues. "Germany is a very important lesson in that if we were to make that decision not to maintain our existing nuclear, what you might get ... is basically more carbon," she said.
The Environmental Protection Agency on Monday formally declared that greenhouse-gas emissions pose a threat to public health and welfare, a long-awaited final declaration that sets the stage for regulation. The announcement follows through on the agency's initial finding in April, and it comes as negotiators begin two weeks of meetings in Copenhagen on climate change. The finding is expected to begin the process of regulating planet-warming emissions.
The Environmental Protection Agency plans to issue its final rule on the revised renewable fuel standard by the end of this year. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson earlier said the agency is looking carefully at feedback gathered during the public comment period that might help quantify the uncertainties associated with international indirect land-use change emissions.
The U.S. lags far behind other countries when it comes to the solar-panel industry. For the industry to thrive here, Thomas Friedman writes, there has to be nationwide certainty surrounding price, connectivity and regulation. And it should thrive here or we'll be dependent on China for our energy, he notes.