A few weeks ago, EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson announced that 10,000 facilities would soon have to measure and register their carbon emissions. Last week, she told a packed house at the Governors’ Global Climate Summit2 in Los Angeles that her agency will introduce rules requiring significant new sources of carbon emissions, like a new or remodeled fossil-fueled power plant, to pay for the right to pollute.
Clearly, these are salvos in the Obama administration’s campaign to use the Clean Air Act to reduce greenhouse gases, rather than wait for Congress to figure out how to do it (last year, when I outlined for presidential candidate Obama how to do this, I sensed it appealed to the law professor in him, even though he was a member of Congress at the time!).
While the US Chamber of Commerce recoiled in horror at these announcements—causing PG&E , Exelon and PNM to cancel their memberships in protest over the Chamber’s “so last-century” position—others saw opportunity. Among those who will create new jobs in a low-carbon economy are the oft-maligned “bean counters,” or in this case, the carbon counters.