2015: The Year of New Public Health Standards for Ozone

With only one month left in the year, the Environmental Protection Agency released its long awaited and updated proposed ground-level ozone standards on November 25, 2014.  EPA updated its ozone standard in order to ensure protection of public health based on extensive scientific evidence about ozone’s health effects – especially the impact it has on [...]

TVA Approves Shawnee Pollution Controls Instead of Retirement

On Dec. 30, during a special session of the Tennessee Valley Authority board, a decision was finalized to invest significant resources into retrofitting two units at its older, Shawnee coal plant in Paducah, KY. As explained in an earlier SACE blog, TVA had to make a decision concerning Shawnee Units 1 and 4 by December [...]

Decisions, Decisions at TVA’s Shawnee Coal Plant

As 2014 draws to a close, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) has been busy working on making an important decision at its Shawnee coal plant in Paducah, KY.  December 9th marked the end of the public comment period for TVA’s draft Environmental Assessment (EA) to determine whether or not it should retire or retrofit two coal [...]

Hundreds Gather in Memphis to Discuss Environmental Justice Issues

This blog was co-authored by Sandra Upchurch, SACE’s Memphis Energy Organizer. As fall descended on Memphis, over 250 people attended the Sierra Club’s 13th Annual Grassroots Community Conference. This was the first year the conference was hosted by the University of Memphis, which joined Sierra Club and other community groups in discussing this year’s conference [...]

Kentucky Group Studies Health Effects of Aging TVA Coal Plant

This guest blog was written by Deborah Payne, MPH, Health Coordinator at the Kentucky Environmental Foundation (KEF). For more detail on KEF’s Shawnee Health Impacts Assessment, please register and attend a free webinar on November 20, 2014 at 11am ET. Download the full report here. In 1957, the price of gas was just 24 cents a gallon, [...]

Coal industry inspires easy solution to droughts

So there’s this new group, CoalBlue, which claims that “A clean-energy, low-carbon world can only be achieved with clean, low-carbon coal.” I got to thinking, what is low-carbon coal? According to the World Coal Association, “Coal is a combustible, sedimentary, organic rock, which is composed mainly of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen.” So, coal without (much) [...]

Lung Association Report: Energy Efficiency Saves Lives in Southeast States

A new report from the American Lung Association, authored by scientists from the Harvard School of Public Health, School of Public Health at Boston University, and Syracuse University, shows that limiting carbon pollution from coal plants can save lives in the Southeast. Furthermore, accomplishing those limits by investing in energy efficiency maximizes benefits for families [...]

Cart Before the Horse: States Sue EPA Over Draft Clean Power Plan

This blog was co-authored by SACE legal intern, Roy Sparks. In June 2014, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued proposed rules under section 111(d) of the Clean Air Act as part of its coordinated effort to fight climate change.  Now, Attorneys General from twelve coal dependent states have filed suit against the EPA regarding the Clean Power Plan [...]

TVA Board Approves Retirement of Allen Coal Plant in Memphis

Today the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Board of Directors voted unanimously to retire all three coal-fired units of the Allen Fossil Plant (990 MW) in Memphis and approved replacement with a new 1,000 MW natural gas combined cycle (NGCC) plant. TVA plans to build the new 1,000 MW NGCC plant directly across from the current [...]

All Aboard the Roller Coaster: Ala. Coal Week in Review

News about Alabama’s coal – its alleged divine origins, televised misinformation from elected officials, pleas to the federal Environmental Protection Agency, closure and conversion of coal plants, and now, a lawsuit against EPA – has been flowing fast and furious over the past week, showing no signs of stopping. Here’s a quick play-by-play to get [...]