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Acid Rain

Article submitted by Neil Adair. Posted 2004.06.21

I have been referring to the acid rain program in the US and Canada as

an example of how our approach differs from the NDPs' command and
control policies for pollution control.

From the EPA website

http://www.epa.gov/airmarkets/acidrain/

Eviro Canada has less useful info

http://www.ec.gc.ca/acidrain/


A Model Program

EPA gained broad input into the development of the Acid Rain Program
by
consulting with representatives from various stakeholder groups,
including utilities, coal and gas companies, emissions control
equipment
vendors, labor, academia, Public Utility Commissions, state pollution
control agencies, and environmental groups.

EPA is maintaining this open door policy as it implements the program,

and it continues to solicit ideas from the numerous and diverse
individuals and groups interested in acid rain control. In addition,
EPA
is collaborating with groups who wish to evaluate the benefits and
effects of the program through economic and environmental studies.

The Acid Rain Program is already being viewed around the world as a
prototype for tackling emerging environmental issues. The allowance
trading system capitalizes on the power of the marketplace to reduce
SO2
emissions in the most cost-effective manner possible. The permitting
program allows sources the flexibility to tailor and update their
compliance strategy based on their individual circumstances. The
continuous emissions monitoring and reporting systems provide the
accurate accounting of emissions necessary to make the program work,
and
the excess emissions penalties provide strong incentives for
self-enforcement. Each of these separate components contributes to the

effective working of an integrated program that lets market incentives

do the work to achieve cost-effective emissions reductions. The
General
Accounting Office recently confirmed the beneftis of this approach,
projecting that the allowance trading system could save as much as $3
billion per year — over 50% — compared with a command and control
approach typical of previous environmental protection programs.