Opponents Of AEP, Sierra Club Deal Win Appeal For Depositions

Jan 5, 2016

State utility regulators are weighing a compromise between American Electric Power, some other energy companies, and the Sierra Club. The deal would let AEP charge customers more in exchange for closing some coal-fired power plants over the next 15 years. Critics of the deal were handed a legal victory on Monday.

AEP’s latest draft would keep three coal units afloat for 8 years and then guarantee their closure by 2030.

The Ohio Consumers’ Counsel represents customers in these cases. The OCC’s William Michael wants three groups - IGS Energy, Direct Energy and the Sierra Club - to give depositions on why they weren’t opposing AEP’s plan.

“This is a $2 billion case. It is a case of the most gravity and I think the commission would benefit from a very robust record," Michael said.

Those groups argued that questions as to why they signed off on the plan could violate attorney-client privileges.

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio ruled for the OCC and asked those three groups to provide depositions at some point this week.