Alabama Power, a unit of Southern Co. (NYSE: SO), reduced emissions of sulfur dioxide (SO2) by 30 percent and nitrogen oxide (NOx) by 28 percent in 2012. The company said emissions of NOx and SO2 from Alabama Power plants were down by 78 percent and 76 percent, respectively, since 1996.
In 2012, Alabama Power switched from burning coal to natural gas at Plant Gadsden’s two units, and the company began receiving the output from a wind energy farm in Oklahoma. Alabama Power said it expects to begin receiving output from a Kansas wind farm by the end of 2013.
By 2016, the company plans to use natural gas at several coal-fired units at Plant Gaston, and is planning to add emission controls to large coal units at Plants Gaston, Gorgas, Greene County and Barry. Alabama Power said it expects to spend another $1 billion through 2016 in order to comply with emissions regulations.
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