State Policy Program News

Libertarian Proposes Climate Swap -- Get Rid of Clean Power Plan and Enact Carbon Tax Instead ($)

The leader of a new libertarian think tank is challenging conservatives to support a carbon tax in exchange for a bucket of Republican victories, including a repeal of regulations limiting greenhouse gas emissions from power plants. This article in ClimateWire includes comments from Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions Faculty Fellow Billy Pizer.

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Coal-Heavy States Explore Carbon-Cutting Options with Support from National Governors Association ($)

In North Carolina, the Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions at Duke University has also suggested states lay the groundwork for trading carbon credits, even if they aren't going to submit plans to the EPA together or participate in a formal regional cap-and-trade program. And other think tanks around the country have been looking at those less rigid ways for states to collaborate, according to ClimateWire.

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Paper Touts 'Common Elements' Approach For Cross-State ESPS Trading ($)

Inside EPA writes about a new paper by researchers at Duke University's Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions that is touting a simpler approach for allowing trading of greenhouse gas (GHG) reductions across state lines than formal, and more complicated, multi-state approaches for complying with EPA's proposed rule governing GHGs at existing power plants.

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Regulation: A 'Common Elements' Approach to Clean Power Plan Compliance ($)

Four researchers at Duke's Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions are keying on that last word—solutions—in a new paper outlining a "common elements" approach to market-based compliance with the Clean Power Plan. Inside EPA discusses the new policy brief, which cites benefits that include cross-state credit transfers without states negotiating a formal regional trading scheme, leaves compliance choices to power companies, builds upon existing state and federal trading programs, and maintains the traditional roles of state energy and environmental regulators.

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U.S. States Could Adopt FVA-like Approach to Meet CO2 Goals

U.S. states could deploy a loose framework of rules to help meet federally-set utility emissions goals more cheaply and side-step political wrangling, a think tank said on Tuesday. States should adopt a “common elements” approach that may enable crediting mechanisms to develop, according to a policy brief by Duke University’s Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions.

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Think Tanks Suggest Less Formal Multi-State Carbon-Trading to Meet EPA Goals ($)

Visceral politics and administrative hurdles could keep many states from using regional cap-and-trade programs to cut carbon emissions under U.S. EPA's Clean Power Plan, but there might be a less controversial alternative. A policy brief released today by Duke University's Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions suggests that states adopt "common elements" that would allow them to participate in cross-state carbon trading systems to reduce power-sector emissions of the planet-warming gas.

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High Costs Prevent Wide Adoption of Animal Waste-to-Energy Systems

As the search continues for more cost-effective energy sources that also are environmentally safe, companies are getting more creative. Many are looking toward utilizing things that were once relegated to the waste stream. One example of a system for harnessing energy from swine manure, which the Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions partnered to launch, is featured by Waste360.

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Q&A with Linwood Pendleton: Co-Author of Study on Economic Impacts of Ocean Acidification

Ocean acidification is a global, long-term problem whose ultimate solution requires carbon dioxide reduction at a scope and scale that will take decades to accomplish successfully.

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Fracking Regulators Deny Legal Request for Air Pollution Rules

North Carolina drilling regulators rejected a legal petition from environmentalists who sought new rules to minimize the air pollution released by natural gas wells. Members of the state's Mining and Energy Commission (MEC) concluded that they don’t have legal authority to develop air pollution rules as requested by the Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League. “We have to have statutory authority to promulgate any rule that we write, including rules that we are petitioned to write,” said State Policy Program director Amy Pickle, MEC's vice chairwoman.

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NC Mining and Energy Commission Approves Fracking Rules

North Carolina's Mining and Energy Commission met Friday in a meeting that was heated at times as it debated the rules for fracking in North Carolina. Fracking involves using water, sand and chemicals to extract oil and gas from underground. It would particularly impact Lee, Moore and Chatham counties. Amy Pickle, State Policy Program director, comments.

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