Will the Clean Power Plan Stand Up to Legal Scrutiny?

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To say the least, the Clean Power Plan (CPP) is controversial, but is it legal? In this Energy and Environment breakfast, ICF welcomes two of the most prominent attorneys in the country who deal with this question — Bill Bumpers of Baker Botts and Kyle Danish of Van Ness Feldman — to present the pros and cons, and handicap whether the CPP needs to be modified or revamped at its core to pass legal muster.

Stakeholders disagree fundamentally on this point and many believe that the CPP is not a “done deal.” For example, is the EPA allowed to require the reduction of CO2 using “outside the fence” options such as renewable resources under the Clean Air Act, or must its jurisdiction focus on plant-specific compliance options? Is the EPA permitted to regulate plants under both Sections 111(d) and 111(b) of that Act?

Such matters are critical for those subject to the EPA’s jurisdiction. The issue of the CPP’s legality will determine what opportunities exist and what costs for compliance will apply to states, utilities, IPPs, renewable developers, and customers nationwide, or whether the EPA has to go back to the drawing board. Cases have been filed in the relevant courts.


  • Kyle W. Danish, Partner, Van Ness Feldman, LLC
  • William M. Bumpers, Department Chair – Environmental Partner, Baker Botts


National Press Club
529 14th Street NW
Washington DC 20045

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