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Clean Power Plan – Requirements

EPA promulgated the Clean Power Plan as Emission Guidelines under Section 111(d) of the Clean Air Act, establishing interim and final carbon dioxide (CO2) emission performance rates for steam generating units and natural gas combined cycle (NGCC) units.

To determine the performance rates, three “building blocks” were considered to be the “best system of emissions reduction” (BSER):

  • Heat rate improvements at coal steam units;
  • Re-dispatch capacity from steam units to NGCC units; and
  • Replacement of fossil generation with new renewable generation.

These national performance rates were then translated into interim and final goals for each state:

  • Rate-based state goals (lbs. CO2 / megawatt-hour (MWh) generation); and
  • Mass-based state goals (short tons CO2).

States may then develop and implement plans to ensure that their state’s affected units achieve the emission guidelines set by EPA. Should a state fail to submit an approvable plan in a timely manner, a Federal Plan will be imposed, although states may still submit partial or complete final plans after a Federal Plan has been promulgated for the state.

States may choose between emission standards plans and state measures plans. For emissions standards plans, states may choose rate-based or mass-based compliance. States may also choose whether or not to allow trading as an option for compliance.

By September 6, 2016, states were to submit either a final plan or an initial submittal to EPA requesting a two-year extension for submitting a final plan. Due to the current stay of the rule, states have no submittal requirements.

For more information on various topics related to the CPP, please see individual fact sheets below.

Fact Sheets prepared by NMED:

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