Georgia Power joins industry in seeking court's intervention for EPA's Clean Power Plan
Overreaching regulation extends beyond agency's authority and will impact Georgia customers
ATLANTA, Oct. 23, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Georgia Power announced today it has joined with other energy companies across the country in support of a motion to stay the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Clean Power Plan, due to its potential impacts on reliability and affordability of electricity in the state of Georgia. Georgia Power is firmly committed to protecting the investments made in its operations, including generation plants across the state.
In a filing with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia today, Georgia Power Senior Vice President and Senior Production Officer John Pemberton noted that, under EPA's proposed compliance solution, the company would be required to retire 4,800 megawatts (MW) – more than 20 percent of its total capacity – of fossil fuel-fired generation by 2030. EPA's compliance solution includes the premature closure of units at Plants Bowen, Hammond, McIntosh and Scherer, as well as Plant Gaston in Alabama.
In addition, based on EPA's Integrated Planning Model (IPM) analysis, impacts to Georgia Power could include:
- Higher production costs and an insufficient reserve margin resulting in increased customer costs of approximately $830 million in 2016 and 2017.
- More than $515 million in additional costs for needed transmission projects with approximately $70 million in costs in 2016 and 2017 alone.
- $485 million in costs related to impacts to the company's fuels program in 2016 and 2017.
- Loss of more than $8 million in annual property taxes and approximately $15 million in annual fuel taxes (based on 2014 receipts) beginning in 2016.
- Loss of nearly 800 full-time jobs in 2016 and 2017 alone.
Based on EPA's results, and because it takes many years to plan and implement changes, Georgia Power would have to begin activities immediately in 2016 and 2017, regardless of required state implementation plans yet to be developed. Many of the costs and impacts to reliability could not be reversed once the changes have been started under EPA's plan.
Georgia Power relies on an established process with the Georgia Public Service Commission (PSC) known as the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP), to make long-term planning decisions on how to best meet the future energy needs of Georgia reliably and affordably. The IRP is filed every three years and includes a 20-year planning horizon. Georgia Power's next IRP will be filed with the Georgia PSC in 2016.
About Georgia Power
Georgia Power is the largest subsidiary of Southern Company (NYSE: SO), one of the nation's largest generators of electricity. Value, Reliability, Customer Service and Stewardship are the cornerstones of the company's promise to 2.4 million customers in all but four of Georgia's 159 counties. Committed to delivering clean, safe, reliable and affordable energy at rates below the national average, Georgia Power maintains a diverse, innovative generation mix that includes nuclear, 21st century coal and natural gas, as well as renewables such as solar, hydroelectric and wind. Consistently recognized as a leader in customer service, Georgia Power was recently ranked highest in overall business customer satisfaction among large utilities in the South by J.D. Power and Associates. For more information, visit www.GeorgiaPower.com and connect with the company on Facebook (Facebook.com/GeorgiaPower) and Twitter (Twitter.com/GeorgiaPower).
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
Certain information contained in this release is forward-looking information based on current expectations and plans that involve risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking information includes, among other things, statements concerning the EPA's Clean Power Plan and Georgia Power's related compliance plans and estimated expenditures. Georgia Power cautions that there are certain factors that can cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking information that has been provided. The ultimate financial and operational impact of the EPA's guidelines on Georgia Power can only be estimated as of this time and the reader is cautioned not to put undue reliance on these estimates or other forward-looking information, which are not a guarantee of future performance and are subject to a number of uncertainties and other factors, many of which are outside the control of Georgia Power; accordingly, there can be no assurance that these estimates or any other forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate. The following factors, in addition to those discussed in Georgia Power's Annual Report on Form 10K for the year ended December 31, 2014, and subsequent securities filings, could cause actual results to differ materially from management expectations as suggested by such forward-looking information: the impact of the EPA's Clean Power Plan, including Georgia Power's ongoing review of the final rule, the outcome of legal challenges, individual state implementation of the EPA's final guidelines, including the potential that state plans impose different standards, additional rulemaking activities in response to legal challenges and related court decisions, the impact of future changes in generation and emissions-related technology and costs, the impact of future decisions regarding unit retirement and replacement, including the type and amount of any such replacement capacity, and the time periods over which compliance will be required; variations in demand for electricity, including those relating to weather, the general economy and recovery from the last recession, population and business growth (and declines), the effects of energy conservation and efficiency measures, including from the development and deployment of alternative energy sources such as selfgeneration and distributed generation technologies, and any potential economic impacts resulting from federal fiscal decisions; available sources and costs of fuels; the ability to construct facilities in accordance with the requirements of permits and licenses, to satisfy any environmental performance standards and the requirements of tax credits and other incentives, and to integrate facilities into the Southern Company system upon completion of construction; state and federal rate regulations and the impact of pending and future rate cases and negotiations, including rate actions relating to fuel and other cost recovery mechanisms; and the ability of Georgia Power to obtain additional generating capacity at competitive prices. Georgia Power expressly disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking information.
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SOURCE Georgia Power
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