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PUCO APPROVES OHIO POWER PLAN TO INSTALL SCRUBBERS AT GAVIN

 COLUMBUS, Ohio, Nov. 25 ~PRNewswire~ -- The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) today approved the Clean Air Act compliance plan of Ohio Power Company as prudent and the least-cost method of compliance.
 Ohio Power, an operating company of American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP), will proceed with construction of flue gas scrubbers at the Gen. James A. Gavin plant in Cheshire, Ohio, allowing the continued use of Ohio high-sulfur coal at the 2,600-megawatt plant. The company, following a PUCO request to keep the scrubber option open, has already committed more than $117 million toward the scrubber project. Completion is expected in late 1995.
 The PUCO today also issued an order in a related fuel adjustment case. The order approves a stipulated agreement among Ohio Power, the Ohio Office of the Consumers' Counsel and the PUCO's own staff. That agreement sets pre-determined prices for coal at four Ohio Power coal- fired generating plants and limits the cost of building scrubbers at Gavin at $815 million.
 "The commission's actions today reaffirm our conclusion that building scrubbers at Gavin represents a crucial part of the long-term lowest-cost compliance strategy for the AEP System and our customers," said Richard E. Disbrow, chairman and chief executive officer of both Ohio Power and American Electric Power.
 Disbrow noted that the plan was developed as a least-cost measure for all seven operating companies of the AEP System. "That adherence to least-cost methods should help us to remain a low-cost provider of electricity in all seven states we serve," Disbrow said.
 "We have restructured our Meigs mines to supply about 75 percent of Gavin's 6.5 million tons of coal annually. That will preserve about 800 jobs at Meigs. The rest of the coal will likely come from other Ohio mines, preserving other mining jobs," Disbrow said.
 The PUCO ruling concludes a process of public discussions that began in January 1991, shortly after Congress passed the Clean Air Act amendments of 1990. Since then, AEP has sponsored discussions with business and residential customers, regulators, the Ohio General Assembly, environmentalists and other interested parties.
 "The PUCO's approval of the plan today deserves to be recognized as the product of a thorough process on a crucial issue for Ohioans. We also appreciate the efforts of Gov. George V. Voinovich and the Ohio General Assembly for enacting the legislation that made today's prudence ruling possible," Disbrow said.
 A net present value analysis of compliance alternatives revealed that over 18 years, the AEP System's compliance plan -- including scrubbing at Gavin -- would cost about $121 million less than the other major alternative, switching to low-sulfur coal.
 The decision to scrub at Gavin qualifies American Electric Power to receive SO2 reserve emission allowances from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Ohio Power has joined a pool agreement with other utilities applying for emission allowances, assuring about 75 percent of the reserve allowances will be available for the Gavin project.
 Following is a summary of American Electric Power's Clean Air Act Compliance Strategy for SO2 emissions at 12 of the System's 21 generating units affected by Phase I(A) and other compliance actions planned:
 UNITS COMPLIANCE STRATEGY CAPITAL COST
 Ohio Power Company
 Gavin Units 1-2 Flue-gas scrubber operating
 Cheshire, Ohio lease(B)
 Muskingum River 5 Fuel switch to $58 million
 Beverly, Ohio low-sulfur coal
 Kammer Units 1-3 Fuel switch to $48 million
 Moundsville, W.Va. moderate-sulfur coal
 Columbus Southern Power Company
 Conesville 1-3 Fuel switch to natural $30 million
 Conesville, Ohio gas with coal back-up
 Picway Unit 5 Fuel switch to natural $10 million
 Columbus, Ohio gas with coal back-up
 Beckjord Unit 6(C) Fuel switch to None
 moderate-sulfur coal
 Indiana Michigan Power Company
 Tanners Creek Unit 4 Fuel switch to None
 Lawrenceburg, Ind. moderate-sulfur coal
 Continuous Emission Monitoring
 AEP System $28 million
 NOx Controls(D)
 AEP System $37 million
 (A) -- Eight additional units are affected in Phase I but do not require operating or fuel changes. However, the PUCO has urged Ohio Power to fuel switch at its Cardinal Unit 1. The Breed plant of Indiana Michigan Power will be retired.
 (B) -- Completed cost of scrubber is capped at $815 million, according to stipulated agreement of Ohio Power, PUCO staff and Ohio Office of Consumers' Counsel.
 (C) -- Co-owned by Columbus Southern Power Company, Cincinnati Gas & Electric Company and The Dayton Power and Light Company.
 (D) -- For controls required by January 1, 1995.
 -0- 11~25~92
 ~CONTACT: Marshall O. Julien, vice president-communications, American Electric Power, 614-223-1660~
 (AEP)


CO: American Electric Power ST: Ohio IN: UTI SU:

BM -- CL011 -- 1587 11~25~92 15:03 EST
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Date:Nov 25, 1992
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