Akron, Ohio, January 26, 2012 — FirstEnergy Corp. generation subsidiaries will retire six older coal-fired power plants located in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Maryland by September 1, 2012.President Obama 's original plan was to bankrupt the coal industry by charging power plants for CO2 emissions under a Cap-and-Trade bill. That bill failed to get past the Senate. Plan B is to regulate them out of business by ratcheting up other regulations that don't require new laws.
The decision to close the power plants is based on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Mercury and Air Toxics Standards, which were recently finalized, and other environmental regulations.
The total capacity of the competitive plants that will be retired is 2,689 MW. Recently, these plants served mostly as peaking or intermediate facilities, generating, on average, about 10 percent of the electricity produced by the company over the past three years.
The following plants will be retired: Bay Shore Plant, Units 2-4, Oregon, Ohio; Eastlake Plant, Eastlake, Ohio; Ashtabula Plant, Ashtabula, Ohio; Lake Shore Plant, Cleveland, Ohio; Armstrong Power Station, Adrian, Pa.; and R. Paul Smith Power Station, Williamsport, Md.
In total, 529 employees will be directly affected. Existing severance benefits will apply to eligible, affected employees. However, the final number of affected employees could be less as some are considered for open positions at other FirstEnergy facilities and work locations, and eligible employees take advantage of a retirement benefit being offered to those 55 years and older.
Obama on building coal plants in the United States