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Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions
April 2014

Designing CO2 Performance Standards for a Transitioning Electricity Sector: A Multi-Benefits Framework

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Designing CO2 Performance Standards for a Transitioning Electricity Sector: A Multi-Benefits Framework
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The U.S. electricity sector is in the midst of a significant transition driven by changes in markets, technology, and regulation, including a forthcoming obligation under section 111(d) of the Clean Air Act to limit carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from existing fossil fuel-fired power plants. The broad statutory language of section 111(d) presents state regulators with an opportunity to pursue strategies that simultaneously reduce CO2 emissions and address other electricity sector needs. This report discusses challenges facing the electricity sector and the potential to implement section 111(d) compliance strategies that provide multiple benefits for the sector.