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California Bans Dirty Power Sources

Jan 25 2007 Breitbart

By TERENCE CHEA Associated Press Writer

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- California regulators approved rules Thursday banning power companies from buying electricity from high-polluting sources, including most out-of-state coal-burning plants. The rules _ aimed at reducing emissions of heat-trapping gases linked to global warming _ could have a far-reaching effect on the energy market across the West.

While there are almost no coal-fired plants in California, the nation's most populous state, about 20 percent of the state's electricity comes from coal plants in other Western states.

The Public Utilities Commission voted 4-0 to prohibit utilities and other energy providers from entering into long-term contracts with sources that emit more carbon dioxide than a modern natural gas plant.

The new standard is aimed at encouraging investment in cleaner energy sources such as wind and solar, while discouraging the use of coal and other high-polluting fuels.

Coal is cheap and plentiful but releases high levels of carbon dioxide, a gas blamed for trapping heat in the Earth's atmosphere and raising temperatures worldwide.

The rule is expected to take effect Feb. 1.

A landmark global warming bill Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed into law last year required the commission to adopt emissions standards for utilities.


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