White Bluff Generating Plant
White Bluff Generating Plant is a 1,800.0-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power station operated by Entergy near Redfield, Arkansas.
- Owner: Entergy Arkansas Inc. 57%, Arkansas Electric Cooperative 35%, City Water, Light and Power Jonesboro 5%, Conway Corporation 2%, City of west Memphis 1%
- Parent Company: Entergy
- Plant Nameplate Capacity: 1,800.0 MW (Megawatt)
- Units and In-Service Dates: Unit 1: 900.0 MW (1980), Unit 2: 900.0 MW (1981)
- Location: 1100 White Bluff Rd., Redfield, AR 72132
- GPS Coordinates: 34.423555, -92.140186
- Technology: Subcritical
- Coal type: Sub Bituminous
- Coal Consumption:
- Coal Source: Cordero Rojo Mine (Navajo), Black Thunder Mine (Arch Coal), Belle Ayr Mine (Bluegrass), North Antelope Rochelle Mine (Peabody Coal), Antelope Coal Mine (Navajo)
- Number of Employees:
- Unit Retirements: Both units will retire in 2028
In August 2015, plant owner Entergy Arkansas filed a response to a federal Environmental Protection Agency plan to reduce haze in Arkansas. Rather than install expensive scrubbers to reduce air pollution at four units of two power plants, it proposed instead to shut down the two-unit White Bluff power plant — the state's biggest coal-burning power plant — by 2028.
- 2006 CO2 Emissions: 10,949,091 tons
- 2006 SO2 Emissions: 38,122 tons
- 2006 SO2 Emissions per MWh:
- 2006 NOx Emissions: 14,155 tons
- 2005 Mercury Emissions: 581 lb.
Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from White Bluff 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. The study found that over 13,000 deaths and tens of thousands of cases of chronic bronchitis, acute bronchitis, asthma-related episodes and asthma-related emergency room visits, congestive heart failure, acute myocardial infarction, dysrhythmia, ischemic heart disease, chronic lung disease, peneumonia each year are attributable to fine particle pollution from U.S. coal-fired power plants. Fine particle pollution is formed from a combination of soot, acid droplets, and heavy metals formed from sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, and soot. Among those particles, the most dangerous are the smallest (smaller than 2.5 microns), 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. 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.
The table below estimates the death and illness attributable to the White Bluff Generating 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.
Table 1: Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from the White Bluff Generating Plant
|Type of Impact||Annual Incidence||Valuation|
|Asthma ER visits||64||$24,000|
Source: "Find Your Risk from Power Plant Pollution," Clean Air Task Force interactive table, accessed February 2011
Entergy is currently debating whether or not to install scrubbers to reduce sulfur dioxide emissions at its White Bluff Generating Plant in Arkansas. On November 17, 2009 a public hearing took place where local citizens were allowed to weigh in on the issue. The total cost of scrubber installation is approximated at $750 million, causing a backlash from those who want to see the facility shut down. In early December 2009 it was announced that a hearing scheduled for March 8, 2010 was postponed due to concerns raised by the EPA and United States Forest Service and United States Fish and Wildlife about environmental concerns. Construction is still expected to begin in late 2010 and be completed in 2013. Critics of the proposed installation believe the plant should pursue alternative, clean energy sources and not install scrubbers as they do not decrease the facilities contribution to carbon dioxide emissions.
Articles and Resources
- "Generation Portfolio" Entergy.com, accessed July 2020
- "Annual Report 2019, page 24" aecc.com, accessed July 2020
- "White Bluff" Energyjustice.net, accessed July 2020
- "Power Resources & Distribution" westmemphisutilities.com, accessed July 2020
- "EIA 923 March 2020" EIA 923 2020.
- Max Brantley, "Entergy files proposal to shut White Bluff coal-fired plant by 2028," Arkansas Times, Aug 7, 2015
- "The Toll from Coal: An Updated Assessment of Death and Disease from America's Dirtiest Energy Source," Clean Air Task Force, September 2010.
- "Technical Support Document for the Powerplant Impact Estimator Software Tool," Prepared for the Clean Air Task Force by Abt Associates, July 2010
- Roby Brock, "Entergy CEO: Critics ‘will beg’ for Waxman-Markey," Arkansas News, December 12, 2009.
- "Stopping dirty coal in Arkansas," Mother Nature Network, November 17, 2009.
- Existing Electric Generating Units in the United States, 2005, Energy Information Administration, accessed Jan. 2009.
- Environmental Integrity Project, "Dirty Kilowatts: America’s Most Polluting Power Plants", July 2007.
- Facility Registry System, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, accessed Jan. 2009.