CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Gov. Matt Mead harshly criticized a plan by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to reduce regional haze.

The EPA plan seeks to reduce haze in national parks and wilderness areas by further limiting air pollution from coal-fired power plants located in Wyoming.

During an EPA public hearing Wednesday in Cheyenne, Mead says the EPA plan would drive up electricity rates on Wyoming consumers and seems aimed more at killing the coal industry than improving air quality.

However, Cheyenne resident Edith Cook says she favors stricter pollution controls. She says Wyoming could use some of its energy tax windfall to promote clean energy and help retire and retrofit dirty coal plants.

The EPA is accepting comment on its proposal until Aug. 26.

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