As the world grapples with climate change, the Alberta government is poised to grant approval to a new coal-fired power plant without even holding a public hearing.
Please take a moment and send a letter to Premier Ed Stelmach and the Alberta Utilities Commission to let them know you oppose Maxim Power Corporation’s plan to build a 500-megawatt plant near Grande Cache, Alberta.
This one mega-coal plant would generate three million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions per year (the equivalent of adding 590,000 vehicles to the road over its 45-year lifespan) and discharge mercury and pollutants responsible for smog and acid rain.
Even the oil giant EnCana said it’s bad idea.
The plan defies the Alberta Government’s own 2008 Climate Change Strategy, which includes a 2020 goal to stabilize GHG emissions and begin making absolute emission reductions. The reality is no serious plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions can involve the construction of new coal-fired plants.
Coal carries a heavy burden. Each stage in the life cycle of coal -- including extraction, transport, processing, and combustion -- generates multiple hazards for health and the environment, and the economic implications go far beyond the prices we pay for electricity. Accord to a new Harvard study, the true ecological and health costs of coal are thus far greater than the numbers suggest. Accounting for the many external costs doubles to triples the price of coal per kilo Watt hour (kWh) of electricity generated.
The reality is Alberta doesn’t even need another coal plan. It can easily meet its energy demands from wind power and solar power. It’s no wonder Alberta won’t hold public hearings – the reckless scheme is completely unjustified and indefensible.
Help us stop this major new source of air pollution before it starts.
• Edmonton Journal, March 22nd, “Proposed plant too risky for Alberta air quality”
• New Harvard study “Full cost accounting for the life cycle of coal”
• Pembina Institute News Release and Statement of Concern
Follow-up Action for Albertans:
• Contact your MLA – click here to find their contact information
• Sierra Club advocates for a transition away from an economy dependent on toxic fossil fuels towards a clean renewable energy economy. Check out www.repoweralberta.ca for more information.