The proposed EPA regulations would further limit emissions from coal-fired power plants and manufacturing facilities across the state in an effort to improve air quality. As a result, plants would either have to refit their current systems to meet the new standards or build entirely new ones. Energy Consultant Bernie Paul said the costs would be too high.
“Everybody in Indiana is going to bear some of that burden,” Paul said. “Because the costs will be passed on to the industrial consumers of electricity and the residential consumers of electricity and the companies that decide that it’s too costly to keep manufacturing in this state.
But Bloomington Representative Matt Pierce said there’s also a cost to health, the environment and the climate if the regulations aren’t put in place.
“Anytime you bring new regulations on, industries usually don’t like them and they build a record of the worst case scenario because they want to challenge the regulations in court,” Pierce said. “They want to show they’re unreasonable.”
Both Pierce and Paul said innovations in producing and transmitting energy will be a major tool in helping settle the debate.