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EPA to Hold Five Listening Sessions on Updating the Clean Air Act’s Pollution Standards for Power Plants, Refineries/ Sessions seek input to design common-sense, cost-effective greenhouse gas standards for largest polluters

Release Date: 01/28/2011
Contact Information: Enesta Jones, jones.enesta@epa.gov, 202-564-7873, 202-564-4355/ Cathy Milbourn, milbourn.cathy@epa.gov, 202-564-7849, 202-564-4355

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will hold five listening sessions to help the agency update the Clean Air Act pollution standards to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution from fossil fuel power plants and petroleum refineries. The listening sessions will be open to the public and will help EPA develop a common-sense approach to reduce GHGs from two of the largest industrial pollution sources, which are responsible for nearly 40 percent of the GHG pollution in the United States. Reducing greenhouse gas pollution can also result in reductions to other harmful air pollutants emitted by these facilities.

The agency is in the process of gathering information and seeking important input and, as part of a settlement agreement announced December 23, 2010, will propose GHG standards based on existing technologies for power plants in July 2011 and for refineries in December 2011. The agency will issue final standards in May 2012 and November 2012, respectively.

In addition to these GHG New Source Performance Standards the agency is also addressing other pollutants, including mercury and particle pollution, in separate, coordinated actions.

The feedback from these sessions will play an important role in helping EPA develop smart, cost-effective and protective standards that reflect the latest and best information available. The agency will solicit additional public comment during the usual notice and comment period – including the opportunity for a formal public hearing – after the proposals have been published and before they go into effect.

Each listening session is scheduled to last two hours and will feature a facilitated round table discussion among stakeholder representatives who have been identified and selected for their expertise in the Clean Air Act standard-setting process. The agency has asked key stakeholder groups to identify these round table participants.

Registration is not required to attend the sessions. There will be a short period of time at the end of each session for the public to provide comments. The March 4 session will allow additional time for the public to provide feedback. To speak during these times, please notify EPA when signing in to the session. If you do not have the opportunity to speak during these times or you cannot make it to the sessions, written comments on these planned rulemakings may also be submitted. The agency requests that written comments be submitted by March 18, 2011.

For interested persons who are not able to attend the sessions, each session will be webcast and recorded for later viewing via the EPA website at http://www.epa.gov/live.

More information and instructions for submitting written comments: http://www.epa.gov/airquality/listen.html


Listening Sessions

Session 1: Electric Power Industry Representatives
Date: Feb. 4
Time: 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Session Location: Washington, D.C.

EPA Ariel Rios East Building
1201 Constitution Avenue, N.W.
Room 1153
Washington, D.C.

Session 2: Environmental and Environmental Justice Organization Representatives
Date: Feb. 15
Time: 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Session Location: Atlanta, Ga.

Sam Nunn Atlanta Federal Center
61 Forsyth Street, S.W.
Atlanta/Augusta Room
Atlanta, Ga.

Session 3: State and Tribal Representatives
Date: Feb. 17
Time: 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Session Location: Chicago, Ill.

Ralph Metcalfe Federal Building
77 West Jackson Blvd.

Lake Michigan Room
Chicago, Ill.


Session 4: Coalition Group Representatives
Date: Feb. 23
Time: 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Session Location: Washington, D.C.

EPA Ariel Rios East Building
1201 Constitution Avenue, N.W.
Room 1153
Washington, D.C.

Session 5: Petroleum Refinery Industry Representatives
Date: March 4
Time: 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and public comments 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Session Location: Washington, D.C.

EPA Ariel Rios East Building
1201 Constitution Avenue, N.W.
Room 1153
Washington, D.C.