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As the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency considers new clean-air standards, Utah lawmakers want the agency to find ways to allow coal-burning electricity plants to continue to operate with commercially demonstrated technologies.

The House Friday passed SCR9 on a 66-5 vote, and sent it to Gov. Gary Herbert to possibly add his signature.

Sen. David Hinkins, R-Orangeville, said in earlier debate that he worries the EPA is considering such strict changes that coal-fired plants in his area will be forced out of business, even while coal would still be burned in places outside the United States that do not have as many pollution controls.

"It's either going to be burned clean in the United States, or it's going to get burned openly in other countries like India and China," he said. "I'd just like to see us have cheap, affordable power for our citizens, especially Utah."

— Lee Davidson

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