ST. LOUIS, MO – One year after the hottest summer on record, a new report from Environment Missouri Research & Policy Center finds that Missouri ranks 10th in the country for most carbon pollution from its power plants, the state’s largest single source of global warming pollution. Scientists predict that extreme weather events will become more frequent and severe for future generations, unless we cut the dangerous carbon pollution fueling the problem.
“America's dirtiest power plants are the elephant in the room when it comes to global warming," said Stuart Keating, state advocate for Environment Missouri. "If we want a cleaner, safer future for our kids, we can't afford to ignore power plants' overwhelming contribution to global warming. into our atmosphere would be to build more power plants that would dump even more carbon into the air." For Missouri, tackling the problem means cleaning up the dirtiest power plants.”
The report, titled America’s Dirtiest Power Plants comes as the Obama administration readies a new set of rules to tackle global warming. It illustrates the scale of carbon pollution from Missouri’s power sector and ranks Missouri’s biggest carbon polluters.
Key findings from the report include:
- Missouri’s power plants are the 10th most polluting in the country.
- Ameren UE’s Labadie Power Plant is tied for the third most carbon-polluting power plant in the country. In addition, Missouri has four other coal plants among the top 100 most carbon-polluting power plants in the nation: Kansas City Power and Light Company’s Iatan plant is the 63rd most polluting; Associated Electric Cooperative’s Thomas Hill plant ranks 67th; Ameren UE’s Rush Island plant ranks 76th; and Associated Electric Cooperative’s New Madrid plant is the 92th most carbon-polluting power plant in the nation.
- Similarly, the top five most polluting power plants in the state are Labadie, Iatan, Thomas Hill, Rush Island, and New Madrid.
- Missouri’s power plants are its single largest source of carbon pollution - responsible for 56 percent of statewide emissions.
- Missouri’s power plants produce as much carbon each year as 15,800,000 million cars.
"Missouri’s clean energy potential is great,” said Kyle Barber, Managing Partner at Earth First Solar, a local solar business. "We have a huge opportunity to tap into Missouri’s solar potential—creating green jobs and cutting air pollution across the state."
This summer, President Obama directed his Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to propose limits on carbon pollution from new and existing power plants, the largest single source of carbon pollution. In a major step, the EPA is expected to propose an updated rule for cutting carbon pollution from new power plants on September 20. Missourians have already submitted 35,914 public comments in support of limiting carbon pollution from power plants.
Environment Missouri called on state leaders like Senator Claire McCaskill to join them in supporting limits on power plants’ carbon pollution.
“Missouri is the 10th biggest emitter of carbon pollution and the biggest source of that are our dirtiest coal plants, so it’s critical that Senator McCaskill step up and support carbon limits on new and existing power plants,” said Keating.
Environment Missouri is a statewide, citizen-based environmental advocacy organization working toward a cleaner, greener, healthier future. For more information, visit www.EnvironmentMissouri.org.