The Issues Facing Hampton Roads
Commercial menhaden harvesting. Photo by John Surrick/CBF Staff
Map showing location of proposed ODEC power plant. Lucidity Information Design
Plans for ODEC's Proposed Cypress Creek Coal Plant Suspended
On August 8, 2012 it was announced that plans to build a coal-fired power plant in Surry County had been suspended. According to statements, Old Dominion Electric Cooperative (ODEC) asked the Army Corps of Engineers to cease the permitting process needed for the plant to proceed. CBF hopes ODEC officials stand true to these statements. If they do, it will be a great win for the Chesapeake Bay, its rivers and streams and the citizens of Hampton Roads who have so vigorously opposed the facility.
As proposed, the plant would have been the largest coal-fired power plant in Virginia and, by ODEC's own accounts, emit millions of pounds of nitrogen oxides (smog-causing chemicals) and carbon dioxide (a major greenhouse gas), as well as soot, mercury, lead, benzene, and other toxic air pollutants.
Read the CBF report, "A Coal Plant's Drain on Health and Wealth," which explains the impact ODEC's plant would have had if the plant had been built.
Numerous human health organizations, environmental groups, nearby localities, and hundreds of local citizens have publicly opposed the plant due to its likely harmful environmental, economic, and human health impacts on the Hampton Roads region. CBF broadly applauds their unyielding opposition.
ODEC's continued ownership of the property where the plant was proposed and changes in local zoning authority from Sussex County, Surry County, and the Town of Dendron, leave unresolved questions about what will happen next. CBF hopes that a usage of the property can be found that can benefit both the economy and environment of the region.
For now, we are grateful for this apparent victory! CBF will continue to closely monitor any future permitting actions associated with the property.
See the sidebar for more information and read our report, "A Coal Plant's Drain on Health and Wealth."
What role do farms and agricultural production play in the health of our waters? Learn more
Toxic chemicals are entering our waters every day. What can we do about them? Learn more
When the watershed's land summers from pollution and poor management so, too, does the water. Learn how
Sewage & Septic Systems
Upgrading wastewater treatment is key to cleaning up the Bay. Learn more
Did you know that stormwater runoff is the fastest growing source of Bay pollution? Learn more
Find out what other issues are affecting the health of the Bay. >>