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Environmental groups oppose pollution waiver

CHICAGO – Environmental groups have filed formal objections to a request by Dynegy Inc. to waive pollution controls at five Illinois coal-fired plants.

Houston-based Dynegy wants to buy the plants from Ameren Corp., which already has a waiver that allows it to delay installing soot-control equipment for five years.

The Illinois Pollution Control Board refused to transfer the waiver to Dynegy, saying it must make the case on its own merit. Dynegy filed a petition last month to do just that.

St. Louis-based Ameren got the waiver after claiming a financial hardship.

Dynegy says the same conditions exist if it buys the plants, including lower electricity prices driven, in part, by competition from natural gas plants.

Environmental groups counter that the pollution upgrades are needed and that Dynegy was a willing buyer.

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