Alabama Power: Spin masters of mercury, greenhouse gases

Friday, the Mobile Register reported on an analysis by the Environmental Integrity Project of 378 coal-fired power plants across the country.

Alabama Power on dirtiest plants list – Mobile Register 7/27/07

The story told us what we already know. Alabama Power’s plants (and Southern Company’s plants in Georgia) are some of the biggest polluters of sulfer, mercury, and global warming causing gases, such as carbon dioxide.

But Alabama Power spokesmen were spinning away for the public relations kings of Alabama.

The line from Alabama Power is that they are reducing emissions, and their plants emit less pollution per capita compared to smaller plants across the country.

Because they will have emission reduction equipment in place by 2011, we are supposed to forgive them for poor air quality and high amounts of mercury in our streams and fish that APC has perpetuated the past 30 plus years of since the passage of the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act. We’re supposed to overlook the record profits APC has enjoyed at the expense of the health of Alabama citizens and its environment.

Hey, by 2011, APC will be where it should have been in 1981. Way to go guys. Here’s a big ol’ pat on the back from all of us peasants in your kingdom.

The second bit of spin is the idea that there is less pollution per capita. Try telling that to the fish in coastal streams who are innundated by mercury from state coal-fired power plants. Try telling that to the nearly one million fishermen in Alabama who rely on the polluted fish to feed themselves and their families. Try telling that to growing throng of Americans and citizens abroad who are trying to find ways to save our planet from global warming. Pollution is pollution is pollution.

Sorry Alabama Power. Spin all you want, but not all power plants are created equal. Yours are among the dirtiest, most unhealthy, and biggest contributors to global warming. Period.