Greenpeace Semester students and local volunteers display a banner in front of the Potomac Generating Station.
I’m from Virginia. Dumfries, Virginia to be exact. Virginia is coal country. I grew up with our local coal plant destroying air quality, poisoning the water, and bringing those long coal trains to town. Though the Possum Point Generating Facility switched to natural gas some time ago, there are still a lot of legacy issues — at least the coal trains don’t come anymore.
But that facility isn’t what’s on my mind right now.
What has happened this week is nothing short of amazing and the story only keeps getting better. This week, power producers Edison International and GenOn announced the pending closure of almost 4,000MW of coal plants across Illinois, Ohio and Pennsylvania. In Chicago, more than decade of activism came to fruition as Edison International announced the closure of Fisk Generating Station by the end of this year and Crawford Generating Station by the end of 2014. The unparalleled speed of these closures largely stems from a broad-based coalition determined not to accept false solutions like natural gas as a next-worst alternative to coal power. Continue reading →