In the news today…
- E&E Greenwire reports more than two weeks after acting EPA Administrator Wheeler signed a proposal that would revoke the legal underpinning for 2012 regulations on power plant mercury emissions, Federal Register publication of the draft rule “has been delayed due to the lapse in appropriations,” an attorney for EPA said in the status report filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.
- The Hill reports acting EPA Administrator Wheeler is set to face questions from senators at his confirmation hearing this morning. Wheeler, who has overseen EPA regulatory actions such as the proposal of new fuel economy standards and a proposed Clean Power Plan replacement, is likely to face questions about those and other rulemakings.
- E&E Greenwire reports federal judges were deeply skeptical Tuesday of coal executive Bob Murray’s refusal to read a statement to his miners admitting he interfered with their rights to anonymously report safety hazards. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit heard oral arguments in Murray’s challenge to an administrative law judge’s ruling against his companies and the prescribed punishment.
- S&P Global Platts reports the DOE said Tuesday it has made $9.5 million available to create new market opportunities for coal through research into making upgraded coal fuel, producing high-value solid products from coal and other advanced material research.
- Axios reports EPA’s plan to regulate carbon dioxide from coal-fired power plants would lead to CO2 emissions increases as high as 9% in 18 states in 2030, despite driving a modest nationwide cut, a new paper in the journal Environmental Research Letters concludes.
- The Washington Post reports while Trump administration officials trumpet a potential coal boom at the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, it’s unclear whether there will be many takers. Several of the tourist operators, conservation groups and researchers who invested in the area over the past two decades fear that even a modest amount of mining will undermine the landscape’s main attractions.