April 18, 2011

TVA to shut down 18 coal plants

The NY Times reported that one of the nation's largest coal-burning utilities said it will shutter 18 of its coal-fired boilers and pay billions to rein in pollutants at many of its remaining units, underscoring the evolving energy landscape in the United States.


The move by the Tennessee Valley Authority will result in nearly 1 percent of the nation's coal-fired power capacity going offline by the end of 2018, including 1,000 megawatts of coal-fired power TVA said it planned to retire last year. TVA's landmark deal with a suite of states and environmental groups and U.S. EPA resolves a number of lingering violation complaints EPA brought against the company for allegedly failing to comply with Clean Air Act pollution control requirements at 11 of its plants.
Environmentalists yesterday hailed the agreement as a success for public health that will result in major reductions of greenhouse gases on top of targeted benefits in reductions of sulfur dioxide (SO2) and nitrogen oxides (NOx).
EPA estimated that the agreement will cut TVA's NOx by 69 percent and SO2 by 67 percent, resulting in about $27 billion in annual health care benefits by averting thousands of early deaths, asthma attacks and heart attacks. EPA did not calculate specific greenhouse gas reduction figures.


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