Energy policy in the melting pot as Agency clamps down on emissions

The Environment Agency has laid down a clear marker of its intention to drive forward environmental improvements by proposing a significant tightening of limits on acid gas emissions from coal- and oil-fired power stations. But the move could set the Agency on a collision course with the Government, which has bowed to pressure to prop up the coal industry by announcing a major review of the UK's growing dependence on natural gas for its future energy supplies. Nevertheless, the impending squeeze on emissions is encouraging some generators to contemplate retrofitting sulphur abatement equipment - while a growing number of proposals for new "clean coal" plants are coming to light.

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