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The Times-Republican encourages members of the Iowa Utilities Board to approve the power plant plan

January 13, 2008
Members of the Iowa Utilities Board gather in Marshalltown this week for a hearing on the proposed new Alliant Energy power plant.

First, we’re proud Alliant Energy chose Marshalltown and we want them to know we support their plans for a cleaner, more efficient plant in our community.

Second, we want to encourage members of the Iowa Utilities Board to look past all the hype surrounding opposition to the plant and work only with the cold, hard facts:

• This plant will be a hybrid fuel plant, utilitizing renewable resource fuels such as switch grass or corn stalks.

• Yes, it will use coal, but it will also utilize clean coal technology, reducing emmissions even further than ever before — and well below the EPA’s own guidelines for clean air.

• Combined with Alliant Energy’s efforts in wind power production, it shows Alliant’s dedication to providing high-efficient power while working to better reduce our impact on the environment.

Instead of attacking one of the few industries working to improve its relationship with the environment, perhaps those opposed to the plant should look to their own backyards:

• A NASA official plans to testify about the dangerous impacts of coal on our environment. Has he considered how much fuel the space agency burns each year and its impact on the environment?

• A nationwide club dedicated to protecting the environment plans to bring a busload of people to town to “pack the house” at the hearing. Have they considered how much fuel they will expend driving a diesel bus here?

• Others comment on how dirty coal emissions are, yet have they seen the much darker emissions eminating from hundreds of vehicles on the road each day?

• Another environmental group’s leader recently appeared on television talking about how we must curb our appetite for power. Did he realize his own cell phone, laptop and Blackberry were consuming power in front of him as he spoke?

Don’t mistake our message, we agree the environment must be protected. But we believe that can better be accomplished not by attacking the power industry, but by instead looking at our own daily lives for ways we might become more environmentally-friendly.

Alliant Energy has taken great steps to ensure a quality, efficient and clean plant will be built in our community.

We applaud those efforts — and encourage the Iowa Utilities Board to do so as well.



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