DEP recommits to September deadline for Clean Power Plan



John Quigley, secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, wants Pennsylvanians to know that “until otherwise convinced,” his agency will strive to submit a plan to comply with the federal Clean Power Plan in September.

On Wednesday, the department had said it would wait for the courts to decide the fate of the carbon limiting rule before submitting its compliance plan to the federal Environmental Protection Agency. This followed Monday’s Supreme Court decision to stay the regulation while opponents try to strike it down in court.

But today, Mr. Quigley said, “The rule’s in effect, the rule hasn’t gone away.”

“We, at least currently, see a path to submitting on Sept. 6. Obviously, the landscape can change.”

Mr. Quigley said he couldn’t speculate what kind of changes would prompt a delay. It’s hard to guess these things, he said, given how surprising the Supreme Court decision was.

“But we want folks to understand that we’re not taking our foot off the gas pedal,” he said.

“Looking at the future of energy in this country, we know low-price natural gas is going to be around for a long time. We know that the price of renewable energy is coming down in many states. It’s clear that renewables are the future. What the Clean Power Plan is calling for is really good business.”

The DEP is now in “number crunching mode,” Mr. Quigley said, and plans to have a draft of its compliance plan by Memorial Day.

Anya Litvak: alitvak@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1455.

 

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