San Antonio’s clean energy push just in the nick of time.

CPS Energy, San Antonio’s municipal utility, has announced plans to shut its two-unit, 871-megawatt JT Deely coal station down by 2018. The utility estimates this move could save as much as $3 billion in environmental upgrades needed for these aging coal-fired units to comply with pending federal regulations.

CPS Energy is the nation’s largest city-owned utility and supplies both natural gas and electricity to the nearly 1.4 million residents of 9th largest city in the US.  San Antonio is on a path to reduce its reliance on fossil-fueled generation and boost its use of renewable resources, such as wind and solar power, to 20 percent, or 1,500 megawatts, by 2020.

Stricter regulations being formulated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to reduce air and water pollution as well as to control coal waste are expected to force retirement of between 30,000 and 70,000 megawatts of coal generation in the next few years, according to industry studies and San Antonio’s efforts to get ahead of these regulations is pushing them to the forefront of a new energy future here in Texas.