“We'd like the ability to evaluate other upcoming rules and alternatives that will provide the best solution to address the environmental issues and consider the magnitude of cost increases to customers' bills,” he said. “We have serious concerns about the significant increase to customers' bills resulting from the short time frame proposed by the EPA.”
OG&E has estimated installing scrubbers at its coal plants in Red Rock and Muskogee could cost as much as $1.5 billion, plus another $150 million a year for operations and maintenance.
PSO officials estimated it would cost about $800 million for scrubbers at its plant northeast of Tulsa. Bud Ground, the company's manager of governmental and environmental affairs, said the EPA's timetable for cutting emissions is “unreasonable.”
Ground said further study of the EPA's 122-page proposal will help state officials decide how to proceed.
“We think they're wrong, but we don't know just yet what their assumptions were to get to that point,” he said.
Attorney General Scott Pruitt said he is willing to litigate the issue, if necessary.
“Let the EPA be put on notice, as attorney general, I plan to do all that I can to protect and preserve the state's authority and responsibility under the Clean Air Act to craft and implement solutions for our state,” Pruitt said.
Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Tulsa, condemned the EPA plan on Monday, as well.
“State officials in Oklahoma did the right thing: They worked with state utilities to devise a plan that will continue progress in cleaning the air while ensuring affordable, reliable electricity for consumers,” Inhofe said. “But that was too much for the Obama EPA, which rejected the Oklahoma-led plan in favor of their preferred scheme to put Washington bureaucrats in charge and, ultimately, to make fossil-fuel-based electricity more expensive for consumers.”