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Legislation Targets Industrial Emissions- 6/10/2010
The American Power Act is the latest bill to tackle industrial energy use. The bill was proposed to the Senate in May by John Kerry (D-MA) and Joe Lieberman (I-CT). If passed, the act would have implications for manufacturers and the entire industrial sector.
The American Power Act seeks to impose mandatory limits on greenhouse gas emissions on manufacturers. In addition to carbon dioxide, the bill includes methane, nitrous oxide, and nitrogen trifluoride among the list of greenhouse gases. Those involved with the emission, production, import or distribution of large quantities of a registered greenhouse gas would be required to report various data to the Environmental Protection Agency.
Among the measures proposed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the bill also calls for a ban on the manufacture, transit or emission of large volumes of fluorinated gases—commonly used in refrigeration—excepting special approval and 90 days notice.
To encourage energy-efficiency measures, the legislation creates grants to facilitate energy efficiency upgrades in industrial manufacturing through 2015. Under the proposed legislation, retailers and manufacturers would also be rewarded for the disposal or recycling of energy inefficient products. “Premium awards” would be given for the development of the most energy-efficient products.
The act proposes further assistance through the creation of the National Industrial Innovation Institute. The purpose of the Institute is to carry out research and development on projects aimed at improving “the efficiency and competitiveness of domestic manufacturers” through technology.
Kerry and Lieberman expect the proposed measures to greatly reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The bill states a long term target of a 17 percent reduction in emissions by 2020 and an 80 percent reduction by 2050.
Since the bill's introduction in May, it has undergone analysis by a number of firms. Analysts say the American power act would provide a boost to the economy and would create 1 to 2 million new jobs by 2020.