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We Energies, Madison Gas & Electric (MG&E) and Wisconsin Public Power (WPP) have finalized a settlement agreement with Clean Wisconsin and Sierra Club that ensures the utilities' commitment to environmental initiatives that include reductions in greenhouse gases, investments in additional renewable energy resources and the retirement of older, less-efficient generation.

Clean Wisconsin and Sierra Club opposed a water-intake permit for expansion units at the Oak Creek Power Plant, a baseload coal-fired plant in Michigan. Under the settlement agreement, the environmental groups will withdraw all legal opposition to the permit.

The commitments include:

- supporting legislation to advance Wisconsin's renewable portfolio standard from 10% by 2015 to 10% by 2013 and 25% by 2025,

- investing $5 million to implement projects consistent with the final report of Wisconsin's Global Warming Task Force,

- seeking regulatory approval for 15 MW of new solar generation, which would be developed by providing incentives for customers to install solar capacity, purchasing solar energy output from other generators or constructing solar generation facilities, and

- retiring an additional 116 MW of coal capacity from two generating units at the Presque Isle Power Plant in Michigan no later than the end of 2012.

SOURCE: We Energies, Madison Gas & Electric, Wisconsin Public Power

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