The Natural Gas Council (NGC), composed of the four natural gas industry trade associations, firmly believes that natural gas will be a critical component in achieving greenhouse gas emission reductions under any climate change legislation. The various pieces of legislation that have been introduced or may be introduced will be modeled using the National Energy Modeling System (NEMS) for analyzing environmental-energy initiatives. As with any model, input assumptions are the best judgment of the entity requesting the study or the staff of the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), which relies on NEMS to project the impact of greenhouse gas reduction policies on our energy markets and the U.S. economy.
The NGC engaged the NEMS model, using more conservative assumptions than EIA. NGC's model runs placed constraints on the number of nuclear facilities and powerplants utilizing renewable fuels that realistically can be built to achieve the emission reductions mandated under the bill introduced by Senators Joseph Lieberman and John McCain (S. 280). The NGC did not believe it likely that 145 new nuclear plants would be built in United States by 2030, which was the result of the assumptions in an EIA July 2007 analysis of S. 280.
The NGC engaged in this exercise to ensure that any greenhouse gas (GHG) legislation that ultimately may be enacted is sufficiently flexible to address the environmental, economic and energy security implications of a range of possible outcomes that may occur as the energy economy adjusts to mandatory carbon constraints. This project is designed to assist Congress in this effort. While the NGC study focused on S. 280, the findings and lessons learned are applicable to other climate change proposals that have been introduced or may be introduced.
Full report: Greenhouse Gas Initiatives Analysis using the National Energy Modeling System