"The Biden administration is forging ahead with federal regulations using a temporary figure to account for the costs of climate change, as a delay in finalizing a permanent estimate draws frustration from industry and advocates.
The use of estimates to measure the broad costs imposed by carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases was launched by the Obama administration and revived by President Joe Biden, who set an interim $51 per ton number while the administration finalizes a new metric.
The carbon cost figure is touted as a way to more fully account for the benefits of regulations that cut emissions, including renewable fuel, methane, and tailpipe rules, as well as efficiency standards for appliances like microwave ovens, clothes dryers, and home furnaces.
But without a permanent number, what was originally intended as a temporary fix is increasingly being used to guide an array of energy, air pollution, and other rulemakings the administration is moving through the pipeline. Industry groups say the result is too much business uncertainty. Environmental groups say the temporary figure lowballs climate costs and blocks more aggressive action. "