AEP Puts Project On Hold

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The American Electric Power building in Columbus, Ohio.(Photo: Marada (Flickr))
The American Electric Power building in Columbus, Ohio.(Photo: Marada (Flickr))

Columbus-based American Electric Power said it’s shelving a massive research project in West Virginia.

In 2009, the Department of Energy picked AEP to lead the way on developing and commercializing systems to capture and store carbon dioxide. DOE agreed to send the utility up to $334 million to build and install equipment at a coal-fired plant in New Haven, W. Va.

But AEP spokesman Pat Hemlepp said it’s been put on hold. He said the company is not under a current mandate to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but likely will be within two years.

“But the fact we aren’t doing it right now makes it difficult to convince regulators we need to be recovering costs from our customers,” Hamlepp said.

The project was already in the engineering phase, and Hemlepp said stalling the project means they’ll have to forfeit an overwhelming majority of the DOE funding.

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