Retirements will protect public health, continue Maryland’s transition to clean energy
December 13, 2013
This week, NRG Energy signaled that it plans to retire the Chalk Point and Dickerson coal plants in May 2017. Chalk Point, located along the Patuxent River in Prince George’s County, and Dickerson, located in Montgomery County, are 2 of only 7 remaining coal plants in the state. Advocates cheered the decision stating that these retirements will protect public health and continue Maryland’s transition from dirty, outdated coal towards more clean energy. Now advocates are calling for NRG Energy, Governor O’Malley and the Maryland legislature, and all people who care about justice and fairness to ensure a responsible transition for affected workers.
Based on the most recent emissions data, the closure of these two plants will reduce annual emissions of carbon dioxide by 5,407,091 tons and sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions be 11,738 tons. Sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide contribute to fine particle pollution that is known to cause heart disease and premature death. Nitrogen oxide pollution creates ozone and contributes to nutrient overloading in the Chesapeake Bay. Closure of these two coal plants will also eliminate the daily dumping of millions of gallons of toxic laden wastewater into Maryland rivers. For example, in the last three years alone, the Chalk Point and Dickerson plants have dumped at least 12,000 pounds of toxic chemicals in Maryland waters. Last but not least, shuttering these two plants will prevent the generation of over 139,000 tons of dangerous coal ash waste each year.
For the press release, click here.