AEP-EPA-What’s In An Acronym?

BY ON June 23, 2011

This piece was cross-posted at Milspouse Mutterings Karen

AEP is American Electric Power – EPA is the Environmental Protection Agency.  Now recently AEP decided to make an announcement that because of the Clean Air Act rules – they are going to be “forced” to shut down some plants… setting off some concerns that their customers are going to suffer.  As an op-ed in the New York Times with the title of AEP Protests Too Much says,

This is a deceptive and particularly cynical claim. The utility is making a business decision that has little to do with the rules.

These plants were already scheduled to be closed!  Some of them because of prior violations of the Clean Air Act

Many had long been slated for retirement, in part to comply with a 2007 settlement with the George W. Bush administration in which the company agreed to settle violations of the Clean Air Act by spending $4.7 billion to retire or retrofit aging units.

According to the op-ed, some of these plants were 55 years old, and some only at 5% of capacity.  They are often only used for overloads/for peak power.

AEP also whimpers that the rules timetable is much too soon, making it sound like they are being forced to retrofit in a hurry.  Well… is in a hurry over 10 years???  These “new rules” have been contemplated since the Clinton Administration!

So – other companies have retrofitted, have made improvements.. and they are doing just fine, thank you very much.

As for the utility’s claims of undue haste, they don’t stand up to even minimal review. Both rules have been in the works since the Clinton administration, and companies that have made their plants more efficient or invested in cleaner-burning fuels or up-to-date pollution control technologies are by now well prepared to deal with them.

Their stockholders might want to ask AEP’s board why they have done nothing other than spend money on lawyers and lobbyists to stop, delay, obfuscate and generally hinder the Clean Air Act since the 1970s; instead of taking the high road and making sure their emissions are cleaner?

Mom’s Clean Air Force is having a blog radio discussion – based on a recent study by Dr. Sande Okelo of Johns Hopkins Children Center.   We’ll be discussing morbidity disparities between black and white children referred to asthma specialist care.   It is Monday, June 27 at 10:00 am. This should be a great discussion!


TOPICS: Politics, Pollution