New carbon dioxide limits could bring changes for coal-powered states like Missouri

Jun 3, 2014

Coal is transported by train from Wyoming to fuel Ameren Missouri's power plants, like this one in Labadie.
Credit Veronique LaCapra / St. Louis Public Radio

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has proposed the first-ever rules to cut carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants.

 The new regulations would set different emissions targets for each state, and would leave it up to the states to figure out how to meet them over the next 15 years. David Weiskopf  is with the Midwest office of the Natural Resources Defense Council. He says Missouri’s target rate for 2030 is higher than what many states are emitting now. “I think what this rule is reflecting is an acknowledgement that Missouri is heavily reliant on power plants that are fueled by coal. And it’s not asking anybody to shut them all down and replace them with cleaner power plants immediately.”  Weiskopf says Missouri should be able to meet its reduction targets by continuing to invest in renewable energy and increasing its energy efficiency. Ameren says it’s already making those investments. The company says the EPA’s proposed emission reductions are unrealistic and would result in higher electricity rates for consumers.