U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Covid-19 Information Page
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Washington
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 10-19-2009, 01:10 PM
 
Location: Between Seattle and Portland
1,266 posts, read 2,951,694 times
Reputation: 1502

Advertisements

According to my research on the Net, the Centralia Steam Plant (coal-fired) is the single largest producer of sulfur dioxide in the state (WA) and is the second dirtiest producer of electricity west of the Mississippi (after Four Corners).

The brown haze from this plant is evidently ruining not only the air quality, but the majestic views in places like Olympic and Mount Rainier National Parks. The state has not required the plant to install stronger pollution controls. Doug Howell with the Sierra Club says that the plant’s air quality permits are up for renewal and its owners are in negotiations with the State of Washington…but so far, the state hasn’t been tough enough. And Transalta, the plant's owner, has projected 25 more years of local coal production to power the plant.

Not to get into a debate on jobs vs. quality of life, but I'd like to know which areas around the plant are most at risk for air particulate pollution.

What are the prevailing winds around the plant? Is Tenino in the fallout path? How about Rainier and Yelm?

Just planning ahead...thanks for any input.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 10-19-2009, 07:25 PM
509
 
3,587 posts, read 4,586,689 times
Reputation: 4601
I don't know about health effects of coal fired electric plants.

But I do know that according to the Forest Service and National Park Service that plant and the one in Boardman, Oregon have done more to reduce visibility in the northwest than any other source.

Time to shut down the coal fired electric plants and replace them with nuclear, or solar (wind sucks) NOW!!
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-19-2009, 09:10 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
26,203 posts, read 43,953,665 times
Reputation: 29728
Quote:
Originally Posted by 509 View Post
...Time to shut down the coal fired electric plants and replace them with nuclear,
Bring WPPSS plants back 'on line' There was one pretty close to Centralia.

S_C, the prevailing winds at Centralia are easterly / westerly, you can check with the local airports for wind conditions and history.

The PNW utilities generate lots of credits from cleaner power sources which allows them to run extra strong on pollution. (same will happen with carbon-credits; it's all about economics and making the consumers carry the burden, both health and financial ), 'traded offsets' and Government intervention really screw up businesses)

they should be running the coal exhaust through algae beds and shipping the algae to Grays Harbor for Bio-D production. Then, instead of shipping our prime Bio-D to Europe, we should be using it in heavy commercial polluting equip with high risk of spills (tug boats and trains). Not forcing renewable fuel standards on the 50 mpg clean diesel cars that get used 20 min per day , more useless government intervention. Here we come CARB... (WA & OR - the wimps), hallelujah .
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-16-2010, 03:10 AM
 
3 posts, read 9,613 times
Reputation: 10
I am also curious about the air quality in Centralia. Can someone speak about the general air quality of the city? Are there any neighborhoods that have better/worse quality? If the plant emits sulfur dioxide, does that mean the air in the town stinks?
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-16-2010, 03:25 PM
 
Location: Between Seattle and Portland
1,266 posts, read 2,951,694 times
Reputation: 1502
During our stay in Centralia for several months while we searched for employment and a place to rent closer to the area south of Olympia, we can attest that we never smelled any "suspicious" emissions from the plant and were able to track the noxious plume on the eastern horizon as always blowing AWAY from Centralia. Maybe we were just lucky.

If you look west of the river for a place to live, I'm pretty certain this would be a non-issue for you, not that I wouldn't LOVE to see it become a non-issue for everyone who's affected.

Wasn't there some rumor going around that the steam plant was in danger of losing its tax exemption and threatening to close and return to Canada, or something? (Hey, don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.)
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-23-2010, 09:25 AM
 
Location: Spokane, WA
850 posts, read 3,320,651 times
Reputation: 919
I have never noticed any smells smells driving through Centralia. But it's a poopy place; why do you want to move there?
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-23-2010, 02:48 PM
 
Location: Big Island- Hawaii, AK, WA where the whales are!
1,492 posts, read 3,791,623 times
Reputation: 785
It never makes it to Yelm - Rainier area - let alone Mt Rainier. Never noticed when I have driven through Bucoda either.
I notice the plume on the way to 1-5 past Tenio but never noticed smell. I have driving most of the Public roads in the area around the mining and past the plant. Never really noticed sulfer smell. Haven't lived in the Centraila area but friends do and never heard them complain about it.

I do know the sulfer dioxade smell from Hawaii and valcanoe... Nothing at all like that.

To my knowledge - I remember reading in the paper couple of years ago they shut down allot of the mining. It isn't anywhere near the mining as it used to be. It is a very strange place though to drive out to. Resembles pictures of the moon.

Centralia area I would be more concerned of living on higer ground for the past flooding.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-25-2010, 03:18 PM
 
1 posts, read 4,785 times
Reputation: 14
According to a recent report by Physicians for Social Responsibility, Coal pollution has been linked to cancer, stroke, heart attack and lung disease. Here's a link: [url]http://www.sierraclub.org/coal/wa/downloads/coals-assault-executive.pdf[/url].

Pollution from the TransAlta coal plant in Centralia, WA is worst for the people living nearby, but actually effects health quality across the state. In addition to air born particulates, TransAlta is also the state's largest source of mercury pollution, which contaminates fish hundreds of miles from the actual plant. Mercury causes brain damage in children (women who are pregnant, breast feeding or may become pregnant are also warned to reduce their fish consumption because of the high levels of mercury).

TransAlta is also Washington's largest single source of global warming pollution.

The TransAlta coal company currently gets a $5 million sales tax break which the State Senate wants to eliminate but Governor Gregoire wants to keep in place. The tax break was given to the coal plant in 1997 to protect jobs at the nearby coal mine, but TransAlta closed the coal mine in 2006 and fired 600 workers. TransAlta is a $3 billion international corporation, so removing this tax break would hardly force them to close down, but it would definitely make a difference in the state's budget. THere's no reason that Washington should be giving away $5 million a year to an international coal company, this money could be going to much better uses.

Governor Gregoire is currently holding confidential negotiations with the TransAlta Corporation about their coal plant's pollution. Last year, the state proposed a mercury pollution deal which environmental and public health groups universally decried as creating absolutely no enforceable pollution reductions. The Department of Ecology is expected to issue a response to those public comments and a final version of the pollution deal within the next few weeks.

The Governor is also negotiating over the coal plant's CO2 pollution. Environmental groups are concerned that this could lead to a deal where the coal plant avoids regulation for the next 15 years and are pushing for a transition off of coal by the year 2015. There has also been widespread criticism on both sides that there has been no transparency or opportunity for public input in this process.

More information on all this can be found at [url]www.coalfreewashington.org[/url].

I work for the Sierra Club and would be more than happy to discuss this matter more. I can be reached at 206 378 0114 x315, or [email]ethan.bergerson@sierraclub.org[/email]
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-25-2010, 04:03 PM
 
Location: Between Seattle and Portland
1,266 posts, read 2,951,694 times
Reputation: 1502
Quote:
Originally Posted by ethanbergerson View Post
Governor Gregoire is currently holding confidential negotiations with the TransAlta Corporation about their coal plant's pollution. Last year, the state proposed a mercury pollution deal which environmental and public health groups universally decried as creating absolutely no enforceable pollution reductions.
Well, let's start a petition to move the Governor's mansion downwind from the plant and require the officeholder to be in residence 24/7. Until 2015 or so.

Thank you for your input, Ethan. Sobering stuff.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-29-2011, 02:40 PM
 
Location: Between Seattle and Portland
1,266 posts, read 2,951,694 times
Reputation: 1502
Yippee! The update I was hoping for, even though I've got to wait until 2020 to see it done:

Sierra Club Deputy Conservation Director Bruce Nilles today joined Washington Governor Chris Gregoire in Centralia, Washington as the Governor signed a bill to systematically end the burning of coal in the state of Washington.

The bill formalizes a landmark agreement between the Sierra Club, Governor Gregoire and TransAlta – the owner of the only coal-fired power plant in the state – which will phase-out the massive 1,400 megawatt TransAlta plant between 2020 and 2025. Washington now joins Oregon in approving a plan to phase-out the destructive use of coal-fired power, setting the Pacific Northwest on a path to becoming the nation’s first coal-free region.


Pacific Northwest to Become First Coal-Free Region in United States - Compass

Something to celebrate while we endure the coldest and wettest spring here since record-keeping began at the end of the 19th century. It'll be such a wonderful day to view Mt. Rainier without the haze of toxic pollutants such as mercury, nitrogen oxide, sulfur dioxide and particulate matter usually obscuring the clear air.

I'm proud of my state!
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Settings
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2020 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram


Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Washington
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2020, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top