Tuesday, December 11, 2007


Taking on an unbridled rogue agency like Santee Cooper, or the full P.R. weight of the coal industry, can be a wearying task at times for the growing grass-roots collective of South Carolina residents opposed to the Pee Dee coal plant.

At such times, its nice to remember we are not alone.

Big Coal is attempting to dupe hard-working Americans all over the county with costly coal projects that will harm their health, threaten their natural heritage, and raise their bills. Luckily, in most of these places, folks are fighting back and increasingly beating the Big Boys.

So, this might be the beginning of a series featuring grassroots efforts to fight coal plants all over the country. A utility in nearby Viriginia, tellingly titled Dominion Power, is attempting to exercise the authority implied in its name to build a 585 MW circulating fluidized bed coal plant (incidentally, a technology marginally cleaner than that proposed by Santee Cooper) in Wise County, Virginia.

However, a coalition of concerned citizens and groups including Appalachian Voices, Chesapeake Climate Action Network, and Southern Appalachian Mountain Stewards have come together in opposition to the proposal. They've created a website cleverly titled "Wise Energy for Virginia." Check it out to see how folks in a fellow southern state are endeavoring to beat Big Coal. It won't surprise you to learn that much of their message is the same as the one in South Carolina, i.e. new coal is unnecessary, coal will hurt our state, and clean energy is the alternative. It's nice to compare notes. While visiting Virginia's coalition, consider signing their petition in opposition to Dominion's coal plant.

It's the golden rule, right? Show 'em South Carolina cares!


Anonymous2 said...

I am such a big fan of yours! I would like to help you out a little.

A common mistake by uninformed enviros is assuming anything is cleaner than a pulverized coal plant. This is not the case. You say "...fluidized bed coal plant (incidentally, a technology marginally cleaner than that proposed by Santee Cooper)..."

Check Chapter 3, page 19, from the top engineering school in the US or perhaps the world (MIT) published in 2007:


As you can see, fluidized bed coal CO2 emissions are higher than a super-critical unit. The heat rate is higher as well, so a fluidized bed boiler will have burn more coal for the same output, thus polluting more. You can see what Santee Cooper is proposing (supercritical) is cleaner than CFB boiler.

Next time, you may want to check your facts instead of listening to water fountain gossip around the office.

Oh, yeah, sorry to hear about the "weight of the coal industry" taking such a toll on you guys. Keep your chin up, and keep holding all those signs!

Cannot wait to hear a response from Mike!!! Or are you on break from CofC?

CofC student on a break said...

Hey "Anonymous Guy who Obviously Works for Santee Cooper,"

Not sure what you have against the college.

If you guys know so much about exactly how much these coal plants pollute, why do you go around saying that this will be "among the cleanest plants in the nation" -- that's a lie.

Why don't you use your intimate knowledge of coal plant emissions to build something that won't ruin the climate, make our rivers and wildlife toxic, spread health risks throughout South Carolina, and cost billions of dollars?

Maybe you should be working on that instead of picking on college students during your free time.

The study you cited certainly shows a number of better technologies than the one you guys are proposing.

Back to class!

Anonymous2 said...

Great to hear from you Mike! BTW, I dont't have anything against CofC, just folks that put their hands over their ears and sing so they won't hear any invonvient facts that just might change their minds.

Hey, how do your comments get posted without moderation? Oh, you are working for the CCl or whoever the folks are running this web page (and are too scared to reveal their identity).

I wish I did work for Santee Cooper. From what I heard at the public hearing and my friends that work there, it's a fantastic place to work!