AEP / Duke Energy / Energy / FirstEnergy

Ohio electric deregulation on the chopping block?

FirstEnergy may ask Ohio lawmakers to create new regulations awarding “zero emission credits,” or ZERCs, to its nuclear power plants, Davis-Besse east of Toledo and Perry east of Cleveland, in recognition that they do not contribute to air pollution.

CLEVELAND — “The big power plants that FirstEnergy and Columbus-based American Electric Power have operated for decades just cannot make electricity as cheaply — or as profitably —  as the new gas turbines, and at times, wind farms.

The companies have been looking for a way to escape the perils of market prices that come with deregulation or at the very least craft ‘surgical’ amendments to state laws that since 2000 have been gradually moving the industry into market-based pricing.

In other words, they want to ‘re-structure’ the state’s utility laws.   And you can bet that their opponents — independent power producers which own coal plants or are building gas turbine plants –along with consumer groups are gearing up for a fight.”

— John Funk, Cleveland Plain Dealer

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