Environmental Economics

Improving EPA's Statutory and Regulatory Processes, Volume I of Toward Comprehensive Standards: The Electric Power Case

This volume is the first of three volumes that attempts to lay out the social, economic, and technical requirements for a comprehensive methodology for setting industry performance standards to improve environmental quality. The project compares the effects of two alternative standard-setting approaches on changes in the development and use of present and future technologies for electric utility power generation. The two standard setting approaches are: 1) media specific approaches currently in use, and 2) a more comprehensive approach in which emissions standards are set on an industry-by-industry basis. This volume (and the economic analysis in Volume II) identify the scope of problems resulting from inadequate single-medium standards and set forth criteria to be used in applying more comprehensive standards to power generation processes. This volume analyses the effectiveness criterion, and what must be taken into account if standards are to be effective in controlling pollution. The volume determines that two broad sets of deficiencies undermine effectiveness, and then analyses the specific laws and regulations that apply to air, water and radiation pollution from thermal power plants to determine whether such deficiencies can be eliminated in electric power generation. Volume III displays the residuals production characteristics of ten fuel cycles on a comprehensive basis.