Industry Trends Report

Concrete JSI: Industry Trends Report XVII

EPA releases final tailoring rule, Senate climate bill unveiled, and businesses cut emissions without regulation

May 17, 2010

The editors of the Industry Trends Report will endeavor to keep JSI members informed of legal, regulatory and sustainability trends that may have an indirect or direct impact on the concrete industry. Please direct your comments regarding the articles or feedback about the Industry Trends Report to

Public Action

EPA to cut mercury, other emissions, from boilers and incinerators
Source: Environmental Leader. May 3, 2010.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has proposed a rule that would require the installation of pollution control technology that will cut mercury emissions by more than half. The proposed rule would cover about 200,000 industrial boilers, process heaters and solid waste incinerators. Link to full story.


EPA to regulate coal ash
Source: Environmental Leader. May 5, 2010.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is proposing rules to regulate coal ash from coal-fired power plants. The proposed rule would require protective controls at disposal sites among other safety measures. The beneficial use of coal ash in construction products is exempt from regulation under the proposed rule.
Link to full story.


Canadian lawmakers pass climate change act
Source: Environmental Leader. May 7, 2010.

The Canadian House passed the Climate Change Accountability Act that will require a 25% reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 2020 from 1990 levels. The bill still needs to be passed by the Senate before it becomes law.
Link to full story.


EPA final GHG tailoring rule
Source: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. May 13, 2010.

The EPA set GHG emission thresholds to define and determine when permits are required for new and existing stationary facilities; the new rule will affect the largest industrial facilities including cement production plants. The permitting will be handled under the Clean Air Act regulatory programs and will be phased in starting in 2011.
Link to full story.
Link to final rule.


Senate climate and energy bill unveiled
Source: May 13, 2010.

The long awaited climate bill was introduced on May 12th by John Kerry and Joe Lieberman. The progress of the bill is uncertain; by June or July the mid-term elections will likely derail any efforts to pass major legislation this session. Key aspects of the bill include: 17% reduction in GHG emissions by 2020, a limited cap-and-trade program, a clean energy technology fund, nuclear incentives, funding for clean coal research, offshore drilling provisions, trade tariffs to address the likely lack of an international climate treaty, a provision to support natural gas vehicles and a consumer rebate system to return revenues from the cap-and-trade program to consumers.
Link to full story.
Link to summary of bill.


What if there is no energy bill?
Source: Industry Week. May 13, 2010.

The Civil Society Institute released a report outlining the transition to a clean energy economy without federal legislation. The transition includes taking all coal-fired power plants and 25% of the nuclear power reactors off-line with modest short term cost increases and cost savings by 2040. Link to full story.


Private Sector Initiatives

Cemex meets goals for alternative fuels, raw material substitution ahead of schedule
Source: Environmental Leader. May 10, 2010.

Cemex has reduced emissions per ton of cement production by 20% from 1990 levels and have cut 1.5 million tons of emissions annually by enacting emissions reduction activities. Cemex has also reduced raw material substitution rates in its clinker production by 12%.
Link to full story.


Some businesses will cut emissions with or without a climate law
Source: The New York Times, John J. Fialka and Saqib Rahim. May 12, 2010.

With increasing uncertainty of Congressional action over comprehensive climate legislation, U.S. businesses will continue to cut emissions because it increases profits and offers new strategic opportunities for market growth. Despite the difficulty of business planning with uncertain regulatory actions, businesses are finding niche growth opportunities by reducing their environmental impact and finding services that allow companies to reduce their emissions.
Link to full story.


The commercial realities of sustainable business
Source: Environmental Leader, David Metcalfe. May 14, 2010.

As the global economy recovers from recession, CEOs would be well advised to push sustainability to the top of their strategic agendas. Sustainability initiatives can drive operating efficiency improvements that result in less energy use and reduced packaging, creating cost savings to companies.
Link to full story.


Green cement startup wins MIT $100K entrepreneur contest
Source: May 14, 2010.

A startup has created emissions-reducing, nano-engineered cement and was awarded $100,000 to invest in the business.
Link to full story.


Anna M. Maiuri
Eric Jamison
Compiled twice monthly by Anna M. Maiuri, Principal, and Eric M. Jamison, Associate, of the Miller Canfield Climate Change Practice Team

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