Majority – Mississippi Power Says Thanks But No Thanks To Coal-Fired Plant

The three member Public Service Commission voted 2-1 today approving Mississippi Power’s plan to build a $2.4 billion coal-fired generating plant in Kemper County. However, the company, which has been fighting for over a year to win approval for the plant, says they will not build the plant.

The reason for this decision by Mississippi Power was the conditions put in force by the PSC. This includes a condition that put a $2.4 billion cap in the “amount of construction costs the company would be able to charge to rate payers.” The company said this restriction made it financially impossible to construct the plant.

The member who voted against the proposal was Brandon Presley, a Democrat, from the northern district. The politics of this is interesting. Presley said rate payers were not protected by even the proposal put forth by the PSC so I imagine he will make a populist claim for opposition. Presley as you may know is thought of as a rising star in the Democratic Party. But while he may claim populism, he is also siding with groups like the Sierra Club and labor unions- not necessarily groups you want attached to your hip as a candidate in Mississippi.

Majority in MS
4/30/10