Energy Exchange

With beneficial electrification plans, the ICC takes a step towards reducing harmful emissions

By Larissa Koehler and Brian Urbaszewski

Today, the Illinois Commerce Commission issued a final order approving beneficial electrification plans from the state’s two biggest utilities — Commonwealth Edison and Ameren. The transportation-focused plans, directed by the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act, are critical to decarbonizing the transportation sector in Illinois.

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At Work Truck Week 2023, electric trucks are picking up speed

Photo courtesy of EDF’s Maaz Haider

If you want to get a clear picture of where an industry’s biggest players think the market is headed, go to their annual trade show. I attended Work Truck Week 2023 in Indianapolis this week, and the picture was unmistakable: Work trucks are going electric. Now’s the time for fleet managers and state and local leaders to develop roadmaps to navigate and manage this transition.

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Widespread public support, new analysis signal urgent need for strong EPA methane protections

By Jon Goldstein and Rosalie Winn

Earlier this month, the EPA closed its comment period on proposed oil and gas methane regulations. Over 400,000 individuals and a broad array of public health, environmental justice, conservation, labor, tribal, faith, youth and other interests — including oil and gas producers themselves — voiced support for EPA to use its authority under the Clean Air Act to enact protective pollution safeguards.

EDF, alongside our partner organizations, submitted comments that underscore how cost-effective protective standards are and the need for EPA to swiftly finalize rules that take more protective action to cut pollution from routine flaring.

Here are some of the highlights from EDF’s public comments, which are available here.

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Trust, but verify: How Colorado must lead as latest methane rulemaking advances

By Nini Gu

Colorado’s oil and gas regulators face an important decision that will determine whether the state can continue to successfully cut methane emissions and reach its statutory climate targets.

In 2021, Colorado’s Air Quality Control Commission adopted a rule that limits how much greenhouse gas can be emitted per barrel of oil and gas produced. However, the 2021 GHG intensity rule left open the critical question of how oil and gas operators can demonstrate that their emissions comply with the new standard.

Allowing companies to determine for themselves how to measure and report emissions without strong guidance and a requirement to use direct measurement data threatens to undermine the intensity standard and set a bad precedent for other jurisdictions — in the U.S. and abroad — that are looking to implement performance-based standards.

Fortunately, the Air Pollution Control Division is now undertaking a GHG Intensity Verification rulemaking to address this glaring omission, offering the opportunity to create a program based on best-available science and grounded in real and meaningful outcomes.

This GHG Intensity Verification Rule must be accurate, reliable and capable of directly quantifying the volume of real-world methane emissions so Colorado can make informed decisions to protect communities and the climate.

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After a worrisome delay, New Jersey regulators are making real progress on electric truck charging infrastructure

By Elizabeth B. Stein and Cole Jermyn

Back in December, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities released a revised straw proposal for the development of charging infrastructure for zero-emission medium- and heavy-duty vehicles throughout the state. This proposal comes over a year after the preliminary proposal was released in June 2021. When it comes to building infrastructure at a large scale and the urgent need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and other health-harming pollution, especially in already overburdened communities, a year’s delay is costly. The BPU must work quickly to finalize an order and direct the utilities to implement their resulting programs soon to align with the rapid deployment of zero-emission trucks and buses expected in New Jersey.

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New study underscores need for better methane measurement and strong regulations

New research reveals methane emissions from Saskatchewan’s oil and gas industry are much higher than previously thought. Fortunately, the Trudeau government has a tremendous opportunity to address this problem as it crafts next year’s federal budget and demonstrates its commitment to ratchet down climate pollution.

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