One of the state’s dirtiest coal fired power plants will clean up its act. Milwaukee’s Valley Power Plant isn’t the biggest plant in Wisconsin, but Emily Miota with the Sierra Club said it’s always been one of the dirtiest. “There are some pretty real environmental justice concerns,” Miota. “We saw the Port Washington coal plant shut down and converted to natural gas, yet this plant that sits between two communities of color and also two low income communities, has been sitting untouched for so long.”
The plant’s operator, WE Energies, announced at a shareholder meeting that the plant will transition to natural gas – although it’s not clear what the timetable is. “We know that they would like to move quickly to establish some of the infrastructure regarding the gas pipeline,” said Miota, adding that the process will go through the Public Service Commission and require quite a bit of public input. “Of course we want to see them move as quickly as possible.” Miota said the decision marks a victory for the coalition of community and environmental groups which has advocated for the change.