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Agency approves PSO plan for regional haze

by Paul Monies Modified: February 10, 2014 at 8:53 pm •  Published: February 10, 2014

The utility also recently signed three 20-year contracts for a total of 600 megawatts of wind power from wind farms to be built in northwestern Oklahoma and the Panhandle by 2016.

Oklahoma Gas and Electric Co., Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt and Oklahoma Industrial Energy Consumers are fighting the EPA’s plan for regional haze for OG&E. They have appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court to review an appellate court decision that went against them last year.

OG&E has four coal units at its Red Rock and Muskogee generating plants covered by regional haze rules. The utility estimates it may have to spend between $1.2 billion and $1.3 billion to comply with the federal plan.

Whitney Pearson, with the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal campaign in Oklahoma, said OG&E should follow PSO’s lead and retire its coal plants.

“For PSO, the right choice was clear: Oklahomans could spend hundreds of millions of dollars to prop up obsolete coal-fired power plants and keep paying for out-of-state coal, or we could use our energy dollars to fuel Oklahoma’s economy with cleaner, home-grown resources and build more prosperous communities,” Pearson said.

PSO, a unit of Ohio-based American Electric Power Co. Inc., has about 540,000 electric customers in eastern and southwestern Oklahoma.

by Paul Monies
Energy Reporter
Paul Monies is an energy reporter for The Oklahoman. He has worked at newspapers in Texas and Missouri and most recently was a data journalist for USA Today in the Washington D.C. area. Monies also spent nine years as a business reporter and...
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