After more than a decade, settlement forces Alabama Power to cut pollution at three coal plants

Alabama Power’s Plant Gorgas in Walker County, where Units 6 and 7 will be permanently retired as part of the settlement (© Nancy Pierce)

More than a decade after SELC joined EPA in filing suit against Alabama Power Company for failing to install appropriate pollution controls on units at five of its coal plants, the utility will now be forced to reduce the amount of harmful pollutants those plants emit.

Under an agreement between the utility, EPA and the Department of Justice, Alabama Power must permanently retire three coal units and convert four other coal units to natural gas. The agreement also requires that the remaining coal-fired units meet emissions standards, the utility will pay a $100,000 fine and must spend at least $1.5 million to install charging infrastructure for electric vehicles.

SELC joined EPA’s case on behalf of our partner, the Alabama Environmental Council, to force Alabama Power to follow the law and close the loophole of grandfathered power plants. A District Court must approve the agreement before it is finalized.

"We hope this settlement will discourage utilities from attempting to cut corners on proper pollution controls, which are crucial in order to lessen the impacts from harmful emissions on human health and the environment,” said Keith Johnston, Managing Attorney of SELC’s Birmingham office.


Read more about SELC’s involvement in the case.

Read the Birmingham News’ story: Alabama Power agrees to shutter 3 coal-fired units, convert 4 others to natural gas in EPA deal
 

More News

Community and faith leaders shed light on Georgians’ energy burden

Nobody likes a sky-high electric bill. But in Georgia, where total monthly energy costs are the third highest nationwide, many families are consi...

Public Service Commission delivers major clean energy wins in Georgia

Georgia’s electric grid is getting a lot more solar following today’s final vote by the Georgia Public Service Commission (PSC) on Georgia Power’...

Lower Cape Fear River no longer to be classified as ‘swamp waters’

Fifteen miles of North Carolina’s lower Cape Fear River will no longer be classified as “swamp waters,” thanks to a successful petition by enviro...

Support floods in to bolster ruling invalidating 2 N.C. constitutional amendments

On Friday, the North Carolina NAACP, represented by SELC and Forward Justice, urged the North Carolina Court of Appeals to uphold the Wake County...

Carolinas object to seismic blasting

State agencies in North and South Carolina have found that seismic blasting proposed for the Atlantic Ocean is not in line with the states’ coast...

Cross-sector collaboration: Groups tackle climate change through transportation reform

As the leading source of greenhouse gas emissions nationwide—and a close second in North Carolina—transportation has a vital role to play in redu...

More Stories