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New Guidlines For Coal Plants

ESCAMBIA COUNTY, Fla. - The Federal Government wants Florida to cut their carbon dioxide emissions from power plants by 38-percent by 2030.

The U.S. Environmental Protection agency, or EPA, announced the dates for all states as part of the Obama Administrations effort to reduce emissions nationwide.

Floridas 2012 carbon emission rate was more than 1,200 pounds per megawatt hour of energy produced.

Gulf Power spokesman Jeff Rogers said the company has and always plans to meet Federal and State standards.

Gulf power and Southern Company have been able to rise to the challenge no matter what the guidelines, Rogers said. He points to the scrubber at the Pensacola Steam Plant.

That was put in place in 2009 to meet regulations, he said.

According to Rogers, the scrubber reduces the plants emissions by 85 percent.  He said the scrubber cost the company to raise the rates on their customers hit the streets.  And some Gulf Power customers say the thats what will happen again.

Of course its going to go up, Pensacola resident Dan Watson said.  We're going to end up paying for these changes.

That means gulf power is going to need new equipment or new scrubbers to clean the pollution that goes in the air, said Mark Jones, another Pensaocla resident.  Anything Gulf Power has to buy is going to trickle down to the customers.

Rogers said its not know if or what kind of changes to the Pensacola Plant. He also says its not known if it will impact rates.

Thats a possibility but right now we dont know, he said. The EPA has a year to realize those guidelines and the state will have a year on top of that to decide how to determine those guidelines.

Gulf Power Administrators expect to hear back from the state by June 2012.