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Senator Coats Blames EPA For Power Plant Shutdown

Senator Dan Coats says new Environmental Protection Agency regulations are to blame for the shutdown of an Indiana power plant that will cost more than 100 Hoosiers their jobs.

Energy company American Electric Power, or AEP announced this week it will fully shutdown its Tanners Creek coal-fueled facility in Lawrenceburg by 2015, costing more than one hundred jobs.

Among other reasons, AEP cited new environmental regulations as a factor in its decision to shutter the plant.

Indiana Republican Senator Dan Coats calls the plant a casualty of the Obama administration’s inflexible regulatory machine.  Coats says he will push for legislation that allows power plants more time to install equipment needed to comply with new emission standards.

But Hoosier Environmental Council Executive Director Jesse Kharbanda says EPA regulations are just one of many calculations companies make when deciding to close a plant.

“Consumption from their consumers, from their residential, commercial and industrial consumers – that’s a very important factor,” Kharbanda says.

“They have to think about other sources of generation within their system. They have to think about the price of power on the open market and to again pin it down on the EPA is just an overstatement.”

Kharbanda also points out that AEP previously decided to shut down three of four units at the Tanners Creek facility by 2015. AEP only recently opted to shut down the fourth unit,which is nearly 50 years old.

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