How many people oppose a new coal-fired power plant in Cassville? According to the Jennifer Feyerherm, director of the Sierra Club’s Wisconsin Clean Energy Campaign, opposition is running ten-to-one — when one factors in signatures on petitions submitted to the Public Service Commission. "There's a little more than a thousand folks that signed petitions that were entered as folks against the plant," Feyerherm said. "That leaves more than three thousand that . . . put in different kinds of comments."
"Obviously those names shouldn't be discredited, those were people opposed to this," said the PSC's Tim Lemonds, referring to the names on petitions. "There wasn't any testimony by each one of those individuals," added Lemonds, who said "about two-thousand" people provided some form of testimony.
Feyerherm said Sierra Club's numbers were based on the number of public comments on the PSC website . "We had someone work real hard to eliminate duplicates, and tally all of the comments that are there."
Feyerherm said the plant remains a bad idea: even if it burns ten percent biomass as proposed by Alliant Energy, it will be dirtier than any strictly coal fired plants operating in Wisconsin, because of the inefficient technology which Alliant has proposed. Feyerherm said that technology is inefficient, because it burns at very low temperatures.
A PSC ruling on whether to allow Alliant to construct the $1.2 billion plant is expected in mid-November.