Iowa is home to some of the nation’s oldest coal-fired power plants, according to a new report released today by Environment Iowa.
Iowa gets about three-fourths of its energy statewide from coal power plants, compared to the national average of 50 percent, the advocacy group says.
Of the nearly 1,200 coal plants in the United States included in the report, Iowa has three among the oldest 100 and 16 among the oldest 500. Iowa has one plant — Walter Scott Jr. Energy Center in Council Bluffs — ranked among the 100 dirtiest nationally, landing at No. 69 on that list. That plant emitted nearly 9.7 million tons of carbon dioxide in 2007.
The Sixth Street Generating Station in Cedar Rapids was the fourth-oldest coal plant in the country, based on the 2007 government data, and the 637th dirtiest, emitting 448,192 tons of carbon dioxide. But that plant has been offline since the 2008 flood, making the Dubuque coal plant the oldest in Iowa now and the sixth oldest in the nation in 2007. The Dubuque plant has been operating since 1941 and emitted 453,843 tons of carbon dioxide in 2007, ranking as the nation’s 635th dirtiest.
The report analyzes 2007 data from the Environmental Protection Agency, ranking the largest power plants nationally and in Iowa, based on age and pollution. The report includes 25 Iowa plants.
Environment Iowa leaders want Congress to set limits on global warming pollution, and boost investments in green energy to replace coal. To read the report, go to www.environmentiowa.org