"The only thing we are going to wind up with in the end are fully scrubbed and fully environmentally compliant units," Akins said during an industry conference hosted by the Edison Electric Institute trade group. He also told Tracy that the company would not be able to meet EPA requirements "within a few years." He blamed the government for not creating new energy policy goals and said AEP will better be able to move forward when they know what new policy goals are. Said Akins: "We are at a transformational stage where we need to spend a lot of new capital on what that new mix of resources is going to be."
He said AEP mitigates the risk of policy changes by diversifying its fuel sources, and this is the main reason for burning less coal and transitioning to other fuel sources. Tracy reports the company is currently looking into gas-fired power plants because natural gas is cheap right now. Nuclear generation is not on the table, though Aikins said the company would likely update its existing nuclear plant to add capacity. (Read more)