News

Barry Smitherman (former RRC & PUCT chairman) and Becky Klein (former PUCT chairman) give KBH Energy Center distinguished lecture on Energy Policy in Texas

Barry Smitherman (former RRC and PUCT chairman) and Becky Klein (former PUCT chairman) gave a KBH Energy Center distinguished lecture on January 25, 2015 at the UT School of Law. Their presentations explored energy policy in Texas and paid close attention to pressing issues for the Texas Legisture.

Speaker bios and PPT presentations are available at http://tinyurl.com/k8o8g64

US EPA PACIFIC SOUTHWEST REGION 2015 HONORS ATTORNEY FELLOWSHIP

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Pacific Southwest (Region 9), Office of Regional Counsel, is pleased to announce its 2015 Honors Attorney Fellowship. This fellowship is for up to a two-year term, and the fellow is expected to commit to the full term. The deadline to apply for the 2015 Fellowship is January 30, 2015. EPA anticipates the Fellowship will begin in July/August 2015. The EPA Honors Attorney Fellowship is designed for a recent law school graduate who is a licensed attorney with excellent academic credentials and a strong interest in a career in environmental law or the public sector (see more detailed criteria below).

EPA R9 2015 Honors Atty (PDF)

Thomas McGarity, “Texas says federal plan for coal plant emissions is too harsh,” (San Antonio Express-News)

The San Antonio Express-News quoted Texas Law Professor Tom McGarity in an article about the recent federal proposal which calls for Texas to reduce its carbon emissions from coal plants by 39%. Although Texas says it shouldn’t be forced to make deeper emissions cuts than Kentucky and West Virginia (which would be required to make cuts of 20% and 18%, respectively), Professor McGarity opined that “Texas shouldn’t be scared of the target because the state has abundant energy sources other than coal.”

Thomas McGarity, “Texas pushing back as feds move to reduce coal-fired plants,” (Houston Chronicle)

President Obama’s plan to sharply reduce climate-altering pollution from coal-fired power plants, the nation’s leading source of carbon dioxide emissions, has led Texas to push back. According to an article that appeared in the December 28, 2014 edition Houston Chronicle, “The federal proposal calls for Texas to reduce its carbon emissions 39 percent from 2005 levels by 2030.” Texas Law Professor Thomas McGarity, who specializes in government regulation, was quoted in the article as saying, “this regulation hits the status quo harder than any other, and we have powerful economic interests in this state wanting to maintain the status quo.” However, Professor McGarity also noted that “Texas shouldn’t be scared of the target because the state has abundant energy sources other than coal,” and concluded that “technology advances when ‘the pressure is there’ from regulation.”