Emissions associated with electricity generation from coal aren’t what they used to be. Between 1970 and 2012, emissions of major pollutants from coal-based power plants decreased by more than 90 percent. We’re proud of how far our industry has come and the path forward we’re helping to forge. During “Earth Month,” we’re spotlighting some of the most cutting-edge clean coal technologies in use at plants today like the John W. Turk Jr. Power Plant or “Turk” in Fulton, Arkansas.
Turk is the first “ultra-supercritical” coal-fueled power plant in the United States which uses a combination of technologies to limit its environmental impact. The plant began generating electricity in December, 2012. Here are some of the ways Turk is leading the way in clean technology and community engagement:
- Ultra-supercritical refers to the technology that creates an increase in steam cycle efficiency to effectively reduce fuel consumption, reagent consumption, solid waste, water use and operating costs.
- Advanced combustion technology allows the plant to generate energy from low-sulfur coal that produces less greenhouse gas emissions (including carbon dioxide) than traditional coal-based plants.
- The plant has installed a whole suite of efficiency measures that allows Turk to use less coal to produce the same amount of electricity as a traditional 600-megawatt power plant.
- The plant also fuels the local community of Fulton, Arkansas with quality jobs, economic development and $6 million in annual school and property tax revenue.
Check out our new video with Dale Earnhardt, Jr., including his tour of Turk last year:
The coal industry will have invested $145 billion by 2016 to achieve concrete emissions reductions, and the investments won’t stop there. As coal remains our most affordable, reliable domestic energy source for years to come, we must continue to support clean coal technology through investment and balanced regulation.