A letter by David Villalobos, recruiting chair for the Clean Power Lake County campaign, appeared in the August 26, 2014, edition of the Lake County News-Sun.
Less Coal Pollution Is Still
A couple of weeks ago, NRG Energy announced plans for the future for its coal-burning power plant in Waukegan, my community, and it is a bleak future.
Although NRG is looking for praise for reducing coal pollution in Illinois — in part by installing legally required emission controls at the Waukegan plant and in part by upgrading or closing plants in other communities — the glaring fact remains that NRG’s decision will subject Waukegan to coal pollution and the wide-ranging health risks associated with coal pollution for years to come. Somewhat less coal pollution is still coal pollution. Only by completely eliminating the burning of coal can we end coal pollution for my community of Waukegan.
We must keep NRG’s decision in perspective: It is a step forward for Illinois, but it is the smallest step forward for Waukegan considering NRG’s financial resources and its branding as a company that “supports clean energy resources and technologies critical to our transition to a sustainable, low carbon society.”
We must continue to work with NRG to ensure a clean, healthy future for the lakefront and the city of Waukegan as a whole.