MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) - A middle Georgia power plant is the biggest contributor to carbon pollution in the entire country says Environment Georgia.
A report on "America's Dirtiest Power Plants" shows Plant Scherer in Juliette, Georgia is one of the "dirtiest."
"We released a report today that looked at the dirtiest power plants in the country, and we found that not only is Georgia the number 8th largest carbon polluter in the country, but we're also home to the number one single largest source of carbon pollution in the country, which is Plant Scherer," says advocate for Environment Georgia, Jennette Gayer.
Environment Georgia's researchers believe the plant produces massive amounts of carbon. Their biggest concern is that carbon emissions from the plant could potentially threaten the community by creating health problems.
Representative James Beverly says along with health problems, the environment is at serious risk. "Our environment becomes hotter as a result of carbon emission," says Beverly.
Plant Scherer is now the defendant in a massive civil suit. On Wednesday afternoon, Macon Attorney Bryan Adams filed civil lawsuits on behalf of a hundred twenty three people in the Juliette, Georgia area.
Adams is alleging Georgia Power's Plant Scherer is responsible for the rise in health issues, and pollution around the community.
Adams anticipates the suit will go to trial once the court gets evidence from both parties.
Earlier this year, we reported Adams and a New York law firm filed 23 lawsuits against Georgia power, and other owners of Plant Scherer, and Vulcan materials for similar reasons.
Georgia Power released the following statement to 41NBC News:
Plant Scherer is one of the largest coal-fired electric generating plants in the United States with a total capacity of 3.27 million kilowatts. Greenhouse gases are released to the atmosphere when fossil fuels are burned, so a plant's greenhouse gas emissions are directly linked to its electricity generation. In 2012, Plant Scherer was the top generator of electricity among fossil-fuel power plants in the U.S.
More than $2 billion has been invested in emissions control equipment at Plant Scherer, including scrubbers, Selective Catalytic Reduction units (SCRs) and baghouses. These controls will result in the reduction of sulfur dioxide emissions by more than 95 percent, nitrogen oxides emissions by more than 60 percent, and mercury emissions by more than 80 percent.
Georgia Power and Plant Scherer comply with all standards for air and water quality that are set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD).
Georgia Power is in the midst of a more-than-$5 billion environmental construction program. This involves building scrubbers, SCRs, baghouses, and using other technologies to control emissions at our fossil-fuel power plants. These controls are greatly reducing the emission levels for sulfur dioxide (SO2) by more than 90 percent, nitrogen oxide (NOx) by more than 85 percent and mercury by more than 85 percent.