New York Power Generators Not On List of Top Carbon Dioxide Emitting Plants In U.S.

Gavin Donohue or
Sara Rosenberger

Albany, N.Y., 11/24/09 - The Independent Power Producers of New York, Inc. (IPPNY) today is pleased to announce that, according to a recent report released by Environment New York Research and Policy Center, New York generators are not included in the ranking of the 150 highest carbon dioxide (CO2) emitting power plants in the country. The report, titled "America's Biggest Polluters," analyzes 2007 (the most recent year data is available) plant-by-plant information from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Acid Rain Program.

"This latest report is further proof of the progress made by the power industry in New York State to not only reduce its CO2 emissions but also, at the same time, to provide safe, reliable and affordable energy to consumers," IPPNY's President & CEO Gavin J. Donohue stated. "The state's record is clear: New York is one of a minority of states in the U.S. that has seen its power generation industry substantially reduce its CO2 emissions since 1990," Donohue observed.

In addition, according to the EPA, within the last decade, CO2 emission rates have dropped 28 percent, sulfur dioxide rates have dropped 77 percent and nitrous oxides rates have dropped 61 percent in New York State. "Reduced emission rates from New York's independently owned and operated generating facilities are a direct benefit of increased efficiencies spurred by the competitive energy market structure, in conjunction with ever stricter state environmental regulations. New York's environmental leadership places the state at the forefront of providing cleaner energy and an improved environment for the citizens of this state," Donohue noted.

New York and nine northeastern states participate in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) and, per program design, are required to purchase almost 100 percent of their CO2 allowance requirements during quarterly auctions, as a way to stabilize and reduce emissions while continuing reliable operation.

The unfortunate reality is that CO2 emission control technology currently is not available commercially in a cost-effective manner. Several pilot programs globally are being evaluated; however, the only real compliance option to reduce emissions is switching to fuels, such as natural gas or biomass, which also carry their own economic and environmental challenges. "Further, the need to control CO2 emissions is not just a power plant issue; it is an issue that will impact every industry, vehicle, home, job and consumer. Therefore, it is important and absolutely essential that any CO2 program properly balances economic, energy, and environmental priorities; otherwise, the outcome is not sustainable," Donohue underscored.

"IPPNY continues to advocate, as does Environment New York, that the most appropriate approach to effective CO2 policy implementation is for it to be managed at the federal level, as opposed to the state / regional level, to create consistency and fair competition," he concluded.


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The Independent Power Producers of New York, Inc. (IPPNY) is an Albany-based trade association representing the competitive power supply industry in New York State. IPPNY Members generate over 75 percent of New York's electricity using a wide variety of generating technologies and fuels including hydro, nuclear, wind, coal, oil, natural gas and biomass.

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