SACE | Southern Alliance for Clean Energy

No New Coal in South Carolina!

Action Alert
October 22, 2008

No New Coal in South Carolina! Let Your Voice Be Heard TODAY!!

Dear Short Salutation, Icky Water South Carolina’s dependence on coal poisons our waterways with mercury, exposes us to the dangers of global warming, and costs us several billion dollars per year, yet Santee Cooper continues to pursue this outdated means of producing electricity at the sacrifice of public health and the environment. Happy WaterThe South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control, Bureau of Air Quality, is holding a public hearing on a new Mercury pollution permit for Santee Cooper’s proposed coal-fired power plant at 6:00 p.m. on October 23, 2008 at Hannah-Pamplico High School, 2055 S. Pamplico Hwy. Pamplico, SC. Please join us at this public hearing on October 23rd as we tell SC officials that our health and our wallets can’t afford a new dirty coal plant! Sincerely, Stephen A. SmithStephen A. Smith Executive Director

Send written comments.

You can also send written comments to SC DHEC, Bureau of Air Quality. Deadline for comments is November 6, 2008! Write to:

Joe Eller
S.C. DHEC Bureau of Air Quality
2600 Bull St.
Columbia, SC 29201

Or submit comments online at the SC DHEC website:

Here are some sample comments/talking points: Dear Mr. Eller,

My name is ___________, and I live in City, State. I am writing because I am concerned that another dirty coal plant will drastically affect public health and do nothing to relieve South Carolinians of high energy bills. We can and must prioritize clean, renewable options like wind, solar, and cellulosic biomass. Please deny Santee Cooper’s mercury pollution permit (the mercury MACT permit).

• DHEC’s permit would allow Santee Cooper’s plant to spew 93 pounds of toxic mercury each year. Mercury is a powerful neurotoxin that makes its way into the developing brains of children and unborn babies when they or their mothers eat contaminated fish. It puts children at risk for delayed walking and talking, learning deficits, and cerebral palsy.

• DHEC proposes to let this plant emit ten times more mercury than a recently permitted plant in Virginia—a plant that is less efficient and burns dirty waste coal, but would still produce far less mercury—and less sulfur dioxide, particulate soot, carbon monoxide and sulfuric acid mist.

• This permit would not require Santee Cooper to install any pollution controls for mercury. Technology such as activated carbon injection would reduce mercury pollution dramatically. Santee Cooper rules out this technology as “cost prohibitive,” but the same technology was recently required for a new plant in Virginia. Why should Virginians get a cleaner plant while South Carolina is stuck with more toxic mercury?

• The Pee Dee plant would also emit tons of other hazardous air pollutants, including arsenic, dioxins, acid gases, selenium, lead, and other heavy metals, which have been shown to cause serious adverse health effects like cancer, birth defects, heart disease, stroke, and neurological impairment. One of those pollutants, dioxin, is among the most potent carcinogens on the planet.

• Santee Cooper has better options like renewables and efficiency that would not produce mercury at all. Santee Cooper is already the single biggest mercury emitter in South Carolina because of its fleet of dirty coal plants. Other utilities have sworn off new dirty coal plants in South Carolina, and it’s time Santee Cooper stepped up to the plate. We don’t need any more mercury in the Pee Dee’s Mercury Triangle, and we don’t need any more mercury in the fish that South Carolinians like to catch and eat.