To the editor: Congratulations on getting the UAF combined heat and power plant up and running. Now it’s time to shut it down.
Coal-fired power plants are closing across the country, like the Navajo Plant in Arizona that harms the Navajo people and Grand Canyon National Park.
The regents should be ashamed of themselves that our main Alaska campus of higher learning would build a power plant that relies 85% on coal. Seriously? We should be transitioning to renewables, not the most CO2-intensive fuel available.
The project website says CO2 emissions will be decreased by 3%. That’s nothing. We should be knocking 10% or more per year off of our carbon budget.
What about the health impacts to local residents? The website says it’s an improvement over the old Atkinson plant, but will it still spew unhealthy asthma-causing smog? Yes.
What will happen with the toxic coal ash? Fire hazards still exist like the coal ash fire in December.
The regents got a cheaper operating power plant, but it will poison my fellow Alaskans, the environment and the planet.