Chemical Industry Skeptical of Clean Power Plan

The American Chemistry Council said that the revised plan from the Obama administration could ultimately hurt the country's manufacturing sector.

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A chemical industry group lauded the omission of industrial combined heat and power units from a newly announced plan to curb carbon dioxide emissions from power plants.

The American Chemistry Council, however, also said that the revised plan from the Obama administration could ultimately hurt the country's manufacturing sector.

President Obama this week unveiled the final standards that would require power plants to sharply curb carbon dioxide emissions over the next 15 years.

The new requirements are stricter than those originally proposed last year, but they do not include industrial CHP, in which plants produce both electricity and heating and cooling from a single fuel source.

The ACC said that exempting CHP "makes good policy sense," and argued that expanding the practice could make generation more efficient while lowering emissions.

Nevertheless, the group also said it was concerned about the plan's system for clean energy credits, along with its potential to increase costs for businesses and consumers.

The ACC said cost increases could limit "undermine the ability of the chemical sector to continue to grow and create jobs."

"We continue to question whether EPA has the legal authority under the Clean Air Act to fundamentally change and regulate our nation’s electricity system," the group said in a statement.

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