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Environment


AEP will stop burning coal at three aging plants
Revised settlement leads to closure of three coal-powered plants and $8.5 million in fines paid to states and environmental groups
by WKSU's JEFF ST. CLAIR


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Jeff St. Clair
 
The Muskingum River power plant is one of three plants to halt coal-powered production by 2015 in a revised settlement between AEP and environmental litigants in a case began in 1999.
Courtesy of Ohio Citizen Action
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One of the nation’s largest utilities has agreed to stop burning coal at three aging power plants as part of a settlement released today with environmental groups. Columbus-based American Electric Power will also pay $8.5 million to eight Eastern states, the U.S. EPA, and citizen groups fighting air pollution.

Ohio Citizen Action is the lead plaintiff in the case.  Director Sandy Buchanan says the recent agreement is a revision of an earlier settlement.

 

Sandy Buchanan - Ohio Citizen Action

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“The rules are with these kind of cases that if you’re going to reopen it, you have to make a further improvement in the environment. So this new settlement is going to lead to more reductions particularly in sulfur dioxide pollution even than the 2007 settlement.” 

AEP agreed to stop burning coal at the Muskingum power plant in Southeastern Ohio, plus plants in Indiana and Kentucky. The utility will replace a portion of that supply with new wind and solar investments in Indiana and Michigan. The company will also spend $5 billion to install pollution controls on plants in its aging, coal-fired fleet throughout the Eastern U.S. 

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