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Policy: Environment & Energy

At least 3 coal plants announced closing since Obama's energy speech

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Beltway Confidential,Environment,Barack Obama,Energy Department,Ashe Schow,Energy and Environment,Coal

American Electric Power announced Thursday that it will be closing its coal-fired power plant in Beverly, Ohio, making it the third plant to announce its closing since Obama gave a new energy speech on June 25. AEP originally planned to shut down four of its five power plants and convert the fifth into a natural gas-powered plant. That plan is no longer in place.

"Due to the cost of compliance with environmental regulations and current market conditions, AEP has determined that it is unlikely to make the capital investment to refuel the unit," the company said in its announcement.

AEP is not the only power company to shut down a plant. FirstEnergy Corp announced on Tuesday that it will close two coal-fired power plants in Pennsylvania by October 9. "The decision is based on the cost of compliance with current and future environmental regulations in conjunction with the continued low market price for electricity," the announcement said.

That makes three closure announcements just this week.

About 380 jobs will be affected due to the Pennsylvania plant closures and 95 jobs will be affected by the Ohio closure.

The loss of the Ohio plant will result in the loss of 585 megawatts of electricity. The closing of the two Pennsylvania plants will result in the loss of 2,080 megawatts, which represented 10 percent of the FirstEnergy's generating capacity and 30 percent of the Environmental Protection Agency compliance costs, the company's statement said.

Fifteen thousand megawatts of coal-fired power have been lost since President Obama took office in 2009, according to Reuters. And another 37,000 megawatts will be lost in the next 10 years ago due to regulations and market costs.

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Ashe Schow

Commentary Writer
The Washington Examiner