Texas Utility Announces it Will be Coal-Free by 2016

Think Progress: “Thanks to new investments in natural gas and utility-scale solar energy, El Paso Electric, a Texas utility with nearly 400,000 customers, announced on Monday that its electricity mix will be free from coal by 2016.”

“Thanks to successive investments in large solar projects, EPE has doubled its utility-scale solar portfolio in less than one year.”

“Deciding ‘it is in the best interest of its 395,000 customers,’ EPE plans to sell off its seven percent stake in the Four Corners coal plant, located on Navajo Nation land near Farmington, New Mexico. The plant came in at number 15 on Environment America’s list of the nation’s top 100 dirtiest power plants, emitting 13.8 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions per year.”

“El Paso Energy’s announcement that it is ‘well-positioned for the Environmental Protection Agency’s new [carbon emissions] regulations … came on the same day Texas governor Rick Perry joined eight other Republican governors saying the rule will cost millions of jobs and slow economic growth.”

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