Plan to close oil-, coal-fired capacity approved in Georgia

The Georgia Public Service Commission on March 20 approved a plan from Georgia Power to shut down two coal-fired power plants at Plant Branch and an oil-fired unit at Plant Mitchell.

The commission voted 4-1 for the utility to close 569 MW of coal capacity by the end of 2013 and the oil-fired unit in 2012, due to new regulations from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The commission also approved three power purchase agreements for Georgia Power to buy replacement power from three plants owned by parent company Southern Co. (NYSE: SO) - Harris, West Georgia and Dahlberg - beginning in 2015.

The commission also approved Georgia Power’s request to begin construction of emission controls at units 1-4 at Plant Bowen, units 1 and 2 at Plant Wansley, and Plant Hammond units 1-4.

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