The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently released a new set of rules designed to help curb certain particularly harmful emissions, but they could have other effects as well, according to Bloomberg.
The new rules will force electricity companies to dramatically reduce emissions of chemicals such as mercury, arsenic and other toxic chemicals.
While this could have important health benefits, particularly in areas downwind from major coal power plants in the eastern half of the country, it could also force the early closure of as many as 32 older plants. Particularly in states like Ohio that rely heavily on coal for electricity, this could force up electricity prices for many residents.
However, many businesses and homeowners have an opportunity to avoid these added costs because of electricity deregulation policies. While the state as a whole relies on coal, certain electricity providers rely largely on renewable electricity sources like wind, solar and biogas.
These electricity suppliers could offer lower rates than coal-based providers that will prove more sustainable because they lack the emissions concerns that have troubled most older electricity companies.