Sims Generating Station

From Global Energy Monitor

J.B. Sims Generating Station was an 80-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power station owned and operated by the Grand Haven Board of Light & Power near Grand Haven, Michigan.


The undated satellite photo below shows the now retired plant at 1231 North 3rd St. in Grand Haven, Michigan.

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Plant Data

  • Owner: Grand Haven Board of Light & Power
  • Parent Company: City of Grand Haven, MI
  • Plant Nameplate Capacity: 80 MW (Megawatts)
  • Units and In-Service Dates: 80 MW (1983)
  • Location: 1231 North 3rd St., Grand Haven, MI 49417
  • GPS Coordinates: 43.071111, -86.23388
  • Electricity Production: 440,810 MWh (2005)
  • Coal Consumption:
  • Coal Source:
  • Number of Employees:
  • Unit Retirements: The sole unit retired in February 2020

Unit Retirements

In November 2018 the Grand Haven City Council voted unanimously to authorize the closure of the plant in June 2020, finding it would be more costly to keep the plant open than close it.[1]

In February 2020 it was reported that the Sims Generating station shut down early due to running out of fuel supply on site.[2]

Emissions Data

  • CO2 Emissions: 469,531 tons (2005)
  • SO2 Emissions: 1,052 tons (2005)
  • SO2 Emissions per MWh: 4.77 lb/MWh
  • NOx Emissions: 602 tons (2005)
  • Mercury Emissions:

Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from Sims Generating 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.[3] 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.[4]

Table 1: Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from the Sims Generating Station

Type of Impact Annual Incidence Valuation
Deaths 2 $17,000,000
Heart attacks 4 $400,000
Asthma attacks 39 $2,000
Hospital admissions 2 $39,000
Chronic bronchitis 1 $620,000
Asthma ER visits 2 <$1,000

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

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