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WVU Law's Energy Center and Downstream Strategies release report on strategies to comply with EPA Clean Power Plan

MORGANTOWN, WEST VIRGINIA—The Center for Energy and Sustainable Development at the West Virginia University College of Law announced today its report on strategies that would allow West Virginia to meet the requirements of the proposed Clean Power Plan rule issued last summer by the Environmental Protection Agency.

Teaming up with Downstream Strategies, a Morgantown-based environmental consulting firm, the Center issued the report titled “The Clean Power Plan and West Virginia: Compliance Options and New Economic Opportunities” which includes strategies to comply with the EPA’s rule to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from power plants. 

James Van Nostrand, director of the Center for Energy and Sustainable Development, emphasized that the goal of conducting the analyses and issuing the report is to provide West Virginia lawmakers and regulators an additional resource for evaluating potential compliance measures and pathways that the state could expand upon with future analyses.

“West Virginia is a major electricity exporting state and the compliance strategies that we adopt, and equally important, the strategies adopted by the surrounding states, will affect our state and the region as a whole,” said Van Nostrand. “It is essential that West Virginia be involved in regional discussions around Clean Power Plan compliance, and we hope that this report will provide an additional resource for air and energy regulators in our state as they engage in these discussions.”

The Clean Power Plan was originally proposed in June 2014 and the final rule is expected to be released later this summer. It identifies a series of pollution reduction measures to lower carbon dioxide emission from the U.S. power sector. It intends to cut emission by 30 percent of 2005 levels by 2030. For West Virginia, that means reducing emission rates by 21 percent by 2030, from a 2012 baseline.

West Virginia led a group of 15 states that responded to the proposed rule by filing a lawsuit challenging EPA’s authority to regulate carbon pollution from power plants. On June 9, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia rejected that suit and a companion suit filed by Murray Energy Corp.

Camplesi, Hoffman recognized in USA Today federal clemency article

MORGANTOWN, WEST VIRGINIA—Two 2015 WVU Law graduates, Amanda Camplesi and Laura Hoffman, are mentioned in a June 1 USA Today article about President Obama’s federal clemency program. 

Camplesi and Hoffman, who graduated in May, worked on a clemency case in the West Virginia Innocence Project law clinic. Their client, Byron McDade, is serving a 27-year sentence for cocaine trafficking while his partners — who testified against him — “got no more than seven” years according to the article. 

After a judge recommended reducing McDade’s sentence to seven years served, Camplesi and Hoffman helped McDade’s lawyer put together a 168-page petition for a Clemency Project screening committee. The students spent 122 hours on the case, including gathering paperwork and visiting McDade in prison. 

The case is considered an early test of the President’s program to encourage nonviolent prisoners to apply for early release.

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