Jack Watson Generating Plant

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Jack Watson Electric Generating Plant was a 877.2-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power station, but was converted to use natural gas in 2015. The plant is located near Gulfport, Mississippi, and is owned by Mississippi Power Company.[1]


The undated satellite photo below shows the power station near Interstate 10 & Lorraine Rd.

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Plant Data

  • Owner: Mississippi Power Company
  • Parent Company: Southern Company
  • Plant Nameplate Capacity: 877.2 MW (Megawatts)
  • Units and In-Service Dates: Unit 1: 299.2 MW (1968), 578.0 MW (1973)
  • Location: Interstate 10 & Lorraine Rd., Gulfport, MS 39502
  • GPS Coordinates: 30.439888, -89.027058
  • Technology: Subcritical
  • Coal type: Bituminous
  • Coal Consumption:
  • Coal Source: Mach No. 1 Mine (Mississippi Power), Sugar Camp Mine (Mississippi Power)[2]
  • Number of Employees:
  • Unit Retirements: Both units converted to natural gas in 2015[3]

Conversion to Natural Gas

The power station was fully converted from coal to natural gas in April 2015.[4][5]

Emissions Data

  • 2006 CO2 Emissions: 5,050,375 tons
  • 2006 SO2 Emissions: 29,113 tons
  • 2006 SO2 Emissions per MWh:
  • 2006 NOx Emissions: 15,683 tons
  • 2005 Mercury Emissions: 178 lb.

Coal Ash

Coal ash from the plant is stored at the Jack Watson Generating Plant Ash Pond.

Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from Jack Watson Generating Plant

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 Jack Watson Generating Plant

Type of Impact Annual Incidence Valuation
Deaths 22 $160,000,000
Heart attacks 30 $3,200,000
Asthma attacks 380 $19,000
Hospital admissions 15 $360,000
Chronic bronchitis 13 $5,900,000
Asthma ER visits 23 $9,000

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

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