On August 3, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized the Clean Power Plan (CPP), the sweeping plan that for the first time regulates carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from the nation’s power sector by setting individual state CO2 reduction targets. The Framework for Assessing Biogenic CO2 Emissions from Stationary Sources, which will codify how power generation with low-carbon biomass can be used as a compliance mechanism for the Plan, has not yet been released.
Despite the Framework not being finalized at this time, the CPP still contains positive language on using “waste derived feedstocks” and “forest-derived industrial by-products.” In a CPP fact sheet, the EPA “generally acknowledges the CO2 and climate policy benefits of waste-derived biogenic feedstocks and certain forest and agriculture-derived industrial byproduct feedstocks.”
This language indicates that EPA is working to craft a reasonable policy on biomass utilization and the ultimate role these wastes can and should play in electricity generation. While it is unlikely that the Biogenic Carbon language will be finalized before the end of 2015, states have already begun crafting CPP compliance plans, and this assurance that reasonable policies on biomass utilization will likely fit within these state plans is a step in the right direction.
For more information on the Framework for Assessing Biogenic CO2 Emissions from Stationary Sources, check out a recent Biomass Magazine webinar that SBFF editor Jessie Stolark participated in. In the webinar, Readying for the Clean Power Plan, Stolark and other speakers discussed the basics of the Clean Power Plan, how it will be promulgated under the Clean Air Act, and the basics of the Plan's Biogenic Carbon Framework. Her presentation also detailed what states are already doing to use biomass resources for electricity, what the federal landscape looks like for biomass power beyond the Clean Power Plan, and what's happening on Capitol Hill on biomass utilization.
Author: Jessie Stolark
Biomass Magazine webinar:
Slides presented by Jessie Stolark at the webinar: