Pella Municipal Power Plant

From Global Energy Monitor

Pella Municipal Power Plant is a coal-fired power station owned and operated by Pella Municipal Power & Light in Pella, Iowa.

On June 8, 2011, the Pella City Council approved a Long-term Comprehensive Power Supply Arrangement with Missouri River Energy Services and Western Minnesota Municipal Power Agency. The agreement would lead to the retiring of the Pella Municipal Power Plant by 2012. A city council member said the size of the plant made it hard to operate economically given impending environmental regulations.[1]


The picture below show the location of the former Pella Municipal Power Plant.

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Plant Data

  • Owner: Pella Municipal Power & Light
  • Parent Company: City of Pella, IA
  • Plant Nameplate Capacity: 38.0 MW (Megawatts)
  • Units and In-Service Dates: 11.5 MW (1964), 26.5 MW (1972)
  • Location: 519 East Oskaloosa St., Pella, IA 50219
  • GPS Coordinates: 41.397979, -92.913775
  • Electricity Production: 110,130 MWh (2005)
  • Coal Consumption:
  • Coal Source:
  • Number of Employees:

Emissions Data

  • CO2 Emissions: 215,682 tons (2005), 118,778.19 tons (2008)[2]
  • SO2 Emissions: 621 tons (2005), 318.95 tons (2008)[3]
  • SO2 Emissions per MWh: 11.28 lb/MWh (2005)
  • NOx Emissions: 353 tons (2005), 248.01 tons (2008)[3]
  • Mercury Emissions:

Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from Pella

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.[4] 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.[5]

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Table 1: Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from Pella

Type of Impact Annual Incidence Valuation
Deaths 3 $21,000,000
Heart attacks 5 $500,000
Asthma attacks 48 $2,000
Hospital admissions 2 $49,000
Chronic bronchitis 2 $790,000
Asthma ER visits 3 $1,000

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

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