By Charles Owens, Bluefield Daily Telegraph
BLUEFIELD, W.Va. — Appalachian Power is seeking another rate increase, which the company says will keep existing power plants in West Virginia in compliance with federal Environmental Protection Agency regulations.
Appalachian Power, along with Wheeling Power, filed the request with the West Virginia Public Service Service Commission to update its current rates for the Environmental Compliance Surcharge (ESC). The company said the proposed $37.2 million ECS increase reflects expected future costs for installing equipment upgrades that are necessary to meet EPA guidelines at the Amos, Mountaineer and Mitchell power plants.
If approved by the public service commission, the rate increase would add $2.84 to the monthly bill of a residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt-hours, a 1.68 percent increase.
“This investment in environmental equipment will keep our Amos, Mountaineer and Mitchell plants in compliance with current EPA regulations through 2040,” Aaron Walker, Appalachian Power president and COO, said in a prepared statement. “We are on track to meet project cost estimates, as well as the EPA timeline requirements for placing the equipment in operation.”