Virginia Power Plant Loses Emissions Claim

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According to Courthouse News, a coal-fired power plant in Virginia lacks standing to challenge state environmental laws that it claimed would force it out of business, the 4th Circuit ruled.

Mirant Potomac River asked the court to vacate the Environmental Protection Agency's approval of a Virginia plan to regulate industrial pollution. It took issue with certain provisions that barred power plants from complying with federal standards by trading emissions allowances with other power plants. The Clean Air Act and the Clean Air Interstate Rule allow such cap-and-trade activity.

But Mirant's power plant must also meet the state's emissions standards because of its geographic location in a "nonattainment area," a region where pollution levels exceed national standards.

The Richmond, Va.-based appeals court found that the Virginia provisions do not, as Mirant claimed, interfere with its ability to trade allowances to meet its obligation.

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