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Clean Power Plan Rule 111(d)

*New* On February 9, 2016, the Supreme Court stayed the Clean Power Plan (CPP) Rule. The stay will remain in effect until the D.C. Circuit court resolves the legal challenges to the CPP and either the Supreme Court decides not to review the D.C. Circuit’s decision or the Supreme Court issues its own opinion.


On August 3, 2015, EPA issued the final Clean Power Plan Rule (PDF 2.1M).  

Due to our unique circumstances, EPA did not set carbon emission guidelines for Alaska in this rule.

In June 2014, EPA proposed a sweeping new rule to cut carbon emissions from electric generating power plants. (“Carbon Pollution Emission Guidelines for Existing Stationary Sources: Electric Utility Generating Units” commonly known as the Clean Power Plan rule). Nationwide, power plants account for roughly 33% of domestic greenhouse gas emissions.  However, electric power production accounts for less than 10% of greenhouse gas emissions in Alaska.

The proposed EPA rule required 30% reductions from 2005 levels of carbon emissions by 2030.  The proposed rule established state specific interim and final goals for emissions of CO2 emitted per MWh of electricity produced. EPA established four main building blocks for states to establish their goals.

  1. Reduce emissions at the power plants;
  2. Re-dispatch – substitute power production from higher carbon emission plants to lower carbon emission plants;
  3. Renewable – substitute power from plants with higher carbon emissions with low or zero-carbon generation; and
  4. Demand-Side Energy Efficiency – reduce electricity demand through consumer efficiency

Much of the proposed rule is predicated upon a robust interconnected electrical transmission system with high capacity and coordinated whole-sale power transactions, like is found in the Continental U.S.  However, Alaska’s electric utility sector only has limited interconnectivity, is not managed by a central Regional Transmission Organization as is typical in the rest of the country, and there is no wholesale power market.  Due to Alaska’s unique circumstances and subsequent concerns about the cost for implementation, Alaska requested an exemption from the rule.

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