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Newspaper Archive of
Clinch Valley Times
St. Paul , Virginia
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February 21, 2008     Clinch Valley Times
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February 21, 2008
 

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2008 7 OU omlnlon i inla Dominion's proposal to build a new clean-coal power generating station in Wise County has brought a great deal of attention and much misinformation, But it's important to know the facts about what this project means for Southwest Virginia. Myth: There will be little long-term economic benefit to the region. FACT: Dominion will invest $1.8 billion in the local economy, adding upwards of $6 million in tax revenues each year. The station itself will have an annual payroll of $4 million. i Myth: This will be just one more dirty coal station. FACT: The station will be one of the cleanest coal-fired facilities in the U.S. The project will meet or do better than federal standards designed to protect public health. The very latest in clean-coal technology and emissions-control systems will limit air emissions significantly. And we have been working with the U.S. Forest Service and the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality to ensure that the facility will protect sensitive environmental areas. Myth: The Clinch River will be damaged by this project. FACT: The facility will help protect and preserve the Clinch River and nearby streams. The station is designed to use waste coal or "gob" that now sits in massive piles throughout the region. Using gob will help reduce a source of acid runoff now polluting local waterways. The design also minimizes by as much as 90% the station's need for water. Myth: Dominion doesn't care about the environment. FACT: Dominion has committed to spend $3.4 billion on projects to improve air quality at facilities companywide. In fact, Dominion is on target to dramatically reduce emissions from the power stations now serving its Virginia customers---sulfur dioxide down 80%, nitrogen oxide down 74% and mercury down 86%--over the next eight years from 1998 levels. Dominion is also a major underwriter of groundbreaking research at Virginia Tech to find ways of keeping carbon dioxide emissions from entering the atmosphere. Myth: The time for coal has ended. FACT: Coal produces about half the nation's electricity and provides a secure, local and abundant fuel source. In fact, the U.S. has three times more coal than Saudi Arabia has oil. Coal is an important tool for keeping power prices Io w and meeting increasing demand for energy. Myth: Other coal technologies, such as coal gasification or "tGCC," would be better. FACT: Dominion will use the cleanest proven technology for this project. The station will have lower emissiom rates for sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide and mercury than the country's two utility-operated IGCC facilities. Myth: We do not need more power stations. Conservation can solve our problems. FACT: Virginia already imports more electricity than any other state except California, and the demand keeps growing. Conservation alone is not enough. Other forms of new generation--renewables, naturral gas and nuclear--play an important role. But they cannot do it all. This station is an essential part of Vir(ginia's plan for energy independence. Our new station will create more than 1,200 jobs for the hard-working men and women of Southwest Virginia. 2" "3 -i