Representatives from utilities and environmental groups are planning to negotiate with U.S. senators over utility-focused emissions caps in climate legislation. Utilities are concerned that a bill with tough carbon restrictions, coupled with federal regulations on toxic substances, will raise costs and lead to plant shutdowns, said Thomas Williams, a spokesman for Duke Energy. John Walke, an executive at the Natural Resources Defense Council, however, said that "coal-plant lobbyists are threatening to hold climate legislation hostage."

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