It finally happened, WI Public Service Commission met a coal-fired power plant proposal they didn’t like. This success came despite Alliant Energy’s well-funded public relations campaign that attempted to greenwash the project with questionable promises to use biomass energy.
Led by Wisconsin Clean Energy Campaign Director Jennifer Feyerherm, the John Muir Chapter played a pivotal role in the decision reached on November 11 by the PSC. At a time when we need to reduce our impacts on our climate, the Sierra Club and supportive members of the public saw this proposal as counter-productive. In fighting the addition to the power plant, Sierra Club argued that the plant would actually increase Wisconsin’s carbon footprint, be more expensive than any other energy alternative including solar or conservation, and ultimately force customers to pay to feed a fossil fuel power plant for years to come instead of investing in appropriate technologies.
When announcing the decision, all of the PSC Commissioners talked about the pressing need to reduce global warming pollution. Two of them talked about the need to increase our reliance on biomass, but that this project was the wrong way to do it. Commissioner Meyer said that in terms of CO2, this plant “is certainly a loser”. Commissioner Callisto noted that Alliant’s so-called “Carbon Reduction Plan” relied on things they were already doing. Indeed, Commissioner Azar described it as “smoke and mirrors”.
In all, there were 4,672 comments generated in opposition to the plant, and only 465 in support. Congratulations to all of you who helped defeat this bad proposal! This decision came after months of hard work from volunteers canvassing, phone banking, writing comments, attending hearings, and holding a great protest at Alliant’s shareholder meeting.
From: Sierra Club – John Muir Chapter November – December e-News!