It’s unclear when the EPA will roll out additional regulations meant to hold the coal industry accountable, though Regan stressed that the rules would focus on long-term concerns, adding that it just makes financial sense to not just tighten restrictions in hopes of sunsetting coal projects but continue pushing for more renewable energy options. “Clean energy is more cost-effective for [companies] and for their customers,” Regan said.
The EPA has much work ahead of it to hold the fossil fuel sector accountable, with a plan to better regulate methane emissions in the oil and gas industry expected in the weeks to come. Climate change groups and activists are also looking hopefully toward the Inflation Reduction Act, which would incentivize further renewables development, create a framework to reduce emissions by 40% by 2030, and allocate $60 billion in funding toward addressing pressing environmental justice concerns through a community-led approach. The bill sadly comes with some alarming tradeoffs, however, such as requiring more oil and gas leasing as a condition of allowing new wind and solar projects to be approved.