Bremo Bluff Power Station

From Global Energy Monitor

Bremo Bluff Power Station was a 254.2-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power station of 254-megawatt (MW) in Bremo Bluff, Virginia.


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Plant Data

  • Owner: Dominion Virginia Power
  • Parent Company: Dominion
  • Plant Nameplate Capacity: 254.2 MW (Megawatts)
  • Units and In-Service Dates: Unit 3: 69.0 MW (1950), Unit 4: 185.2 MW (1958)
  • Location: 1038 Bremo Rd., Bremo Bluff, VA 23022
  • GPS Coordinates: 37.705278, -78.289444
  • Coal Consumption:
  • Coal Source:
  • Number of Employees: +/-75 [1]
  • Unit Retirements: Both units were converted to natural gas in 2014 and retired in 2019.[2]

Unit Conversion and Retirement

The plant was converted to natural gas in 2014.[3] Five years after the conversion to natural gas both units retired in March 2019.[2]


The plant was the oldest coal-fired power station owned and operated by Dominion. Located near Bremo Bluff, Virginia, the station's first two generating units went into service in 1931 and had a total capacity of 30,000 kilowatts. After operating longer than their projected lifetimes, those units were removed from service in 1972.[1]

The third and fourth Bremo units went into service in 1950 and 1958 respectively. Unit 3, the smaller of the two, has a capacity of 80,000 kilowatts. Unit 4 has a capacity of 170,000 kilowatts. The fly ash, together with ash from the bottom of the boilers, is loaded on trucks and hauled to a disposal site near the station where it is disposed.[1]

In 2014 Dominion Virginia Power completed the conversion of Fluvanna County’s Bremo Bluff Power Plant from a coal-burning power generating station to one that uses natural gas.[3]

Coal Waste

The ash disposal areas are Bremo Bluff Power Station North Ash and Bremo Bluff Power Station West Ash surface impoundments.

Emissions Data

  • 2006 CO2 Emissions: 1,534,214 tons
  • 2002 CO Emissions: 169 tons
  • 2002 NH3: 10.2
  • 2002 NOx Emissions: 4,720 tons
  • 2002 PM10 Emissions: 636 tons
  • 2002 PM2.5 Emisions: 596 tons
  • 2002 SO2 Emissions: 13,457 tons
  • 2002 VOC Emissions: 20.2 tons
Constituent (pounds) 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013
Barium Surface Impoundments 95,000 98,000 79,288 59,548 66,200 42,200 15,300 31,900
Barium Discharge 1,600 2,300 1,772 1,915 914 12,900 680 1,310
Mercury Stack Emissions 154 159 129 98 107 87.8 41.5 56.2
Mercury Surface Impoundments 21 22 18 13 13 0 0 3.3
Lead Stack Emissions 2 2 51 36 44 43.6 13.4 19.2
Lead Surface Impoundments 9,440 9,780 7,854 5,951 6,500 5,170 2,259 3,103.8
Lead Discharge 3 4 6 12 18 168 121.7 114.1

  • 2005 Fly Ash Disposed in Surface Impoundments: 68,000 tons
  • 2005 Botton Ash Disposed in Surface Impoundments: 17,000 tons [4]
State Plant Owner/ Operator County Year Tons of Coal Waste Fly Ash Total Bottom Ash Total
Virginia Bremo Bluff Fluvanna Dominion Virginia Power 2005 85,000 68,000 17,000


State Facility ID# Unit Year Op. hrs Months SO2 Tons NOx Rate(lb/mmBtu) NOx Tons CO2 Tons Heat Input(mmBtu)
VA Bremo Power Station 3796 3 2009 3,333 12 1,445.1 0.63 644.2 199,596.7 1,945,408
VA Bremo Power Station 3796 4 2009 5,856 12 5,524.0 0.25 959.7 771,419.8 7,518,732
Facility Total 2009 6,969.1 1,602.9 971,016.5


Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from Bremo Bluff Station

In 2010, Abt Associates issued a study commissioned by the Clean Air Task Force, a nonprofit research and advocacy organization, quantifying the deaths and other health effects attributable to fine particle pollution from coal-fired power plants.[6] Fine particle pollution consists of a complex mixture of soot, heavy metals, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen oxides. Among these particles, the most dangerous are those less than 2.5 microns in diameter, which are so tiny that they can evade the lung's natural defenses, enter the bloodstream, and be transported to vital organs. Impacts are especially severe among the elderly, children, and those with respiratory disease. The study found that over 13,000 deaths and tens of thousands of cases of chronic bronchitis, acute bronchitis, asthma, congestive heart failure, acute myocardial infarction, dysrhythmia, ischemic heart disease, chronic lung disease, and pneumonia each year are attributable to fine particle pollution from U.S. coal plant emissions. These deaths and illnesses are major examples of coal's external costs, i.e. uncompensated harms inflicted upon the public at large. Low-income and minority populations are disproportionately impacted as well, due to the tendency of companies to avoid locating power plants upwind of affluent communities. To monetize the health impact of fine particle pollution from each coal plant, Abt assigned a value of $7,300,000 to each 2010 mortality, based on a range of government and private studies. Valuations of illnesses ranged from $52 for an asthma episode to $440,000 for a case of chronic bronchitis.[7]

Table 1: Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from Bremo Bluff Station

Type of Impact Annual Incidence Valuation
Deaths 23 $170,000,000
Heart attacks 37 $4,000,000
Asthma attacks 390 $20,000
Hospital admissions 18 $420,000
Chronic bronchitis 15 $6,500,000
Asthma ER visits 20 $7,000

Source: "Find Your Risk from Power Plant Pollution," Clean Air Task Force interactive table, accessed February 2011

EPA inspection of coal dams

A 2010 EPA assessment of the West Ash Pond and the North Ash Pond management units at the Bremo Power Station recommended inboard slopes, outboard slopes, drainage ditches, and an emergency spillway, among other measures, to improve the safety of the dams.[8]

Citizen groups

Articles and Resources


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Dominion, "Bremo Power Station", Dominion website, accessed May 2010.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "EIA 860m", february 2020
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Bremo Bluff power conversion complete," Fluvanna Review, May 6, 2014
  4. "Earthjustice, Attachment 3 - Surface Impoundment and Landfill Disposal Data"
  5. Natural Resources Defense Council, "Contaminated Coal Waste: data and Projections for Existing and Proposed U.S. Coal Fired Plants", Natural Resources Defense Council, December 2009.
  6. "The Toll from Coal: An Updated Assessment of Death and Disease from America's Dirtiest Energy Source," Clean Air Task Force, September 2010.
  7. "Technical Support Document for the Powerplant Impact Estimator Software Tool," Prepared for the Clean Air Task Force by Abt Associates, July 2010
  8. Robert Bowers and Dana Pizarro, "Dam Safety Assessment of CCW Impoundments: Bremo Power Station", EPA Report by O'Brien and Gere, Sep. 29, 2010.

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