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America's Power Tour

Formerly Factuality Tour

Now on Tour - The Economics of Environmental Regulations

Nothing comes without a cost. On the campus of Lindenwood University, Senior Environmental Fellow Kenneth Chilton, from the Institute for Study of Economics and the Environment, talks about the economic impact of environmental regulations. While he’s fully in favor of protecting the environment, he reminds us that every regulatory change comes with a cost that must be weighed against the benefits derived.

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Stop #1: Black Thunder Mine

America's Largest Surface Mine - Wright, WY
Experience the mining process at Wyoming’s Black Thunder Coal Mine, located in the Powder River Basin. Arch Coal Vice President of External Affairs, Greg Schaefer, gives us a guided tour of the facilities, showing us how coal is mined, how heavy equipment is used and how it’s loaded onto railcars for shipment.

Stop #2: Tenaska Energy Headquarters

Tenaska Energy Meets Customer Demand with CCT - Omaha, Neb
Dr. Greg Kunkel, Tenaska’s vice president of environmental affairs, talks about the plans for the Trailblazer Energy Center in Texas, which includes the capture and storage of 90 percent of CO2 emissions through the use of scrubbers.

Stop #3: Technology in Action

Clean Coal Technology at Work - MidAmerican's Walter Scott Energy Center
Matt Finnegan, P.E., unit manager at MidAmerican’s Walter Scott Energy Center Unit No. 4, explains how technology has allowed the coal-generated energy sector to make huge strides in emissions control over the last several decades. His unit is one of the most efficient in America.

Stop #4: Harriman Dispatch Center & Union Pacific RR

High-tech Railroads - Omaha, Neb./Council Bluffs, Iowa
Mike Lenzen, general director of bulk operations at the Harriman Dispatching Center, gives us a tour of the complex facility where 800 employees work around the clock to ensure the smooth operation of Union Pacific’s entire rail operation.

Stop #5: See Carbon Capture at Work

Pleasant Prairie Carbon Capture Project - Pleasant Prairie, Wis.
Arlyn Petig, field manager for Alstom Power Inc. tells us about Alstom’s CO2 pilot project, which is the capture of 90 percent of the CO2 from 1.5 percent of the Pleasant Prairie's overall flue gasses.

Stop #6: Site of FutureGen

The Future of Clean Coal Technology - Mattoon, Ill
Angela Griffin, president of Coles Together, explains what FutureGen is and how it will work.

Stop #7: Edwardsport IGCC Station

Meeting Our Energy Demands, Protecting Our Environment - Knox County, Ind
Duke Energy’s large-scale Edwardsport IGCC project may well end up being the biggest construction project in Indiana history. When it opens in 2012, the facility will make history as the largest in the world to use integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) technology to produce electricity while reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

Stop #8: Research Experience In Carbon Sequestration

Meet the Men and Women Behind the Latest Clean Coal Technologies - New Mexico
Some of America's smartest people are working around the clock on the next generation of clean coal technology, which includes the capture and safe storage of carbon dioxide.

Stop #9: Gasification Technologies Conference

Working Toward a Clean Energy Future - Colorado Springs, Colo
Listen as James Childress, executive director of the Gasification Technologies Council, talks about the benefits of using gasification to generate electricity from coal at the Gasification Technologies Conference in Colorado Springs.

Stop #10: Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnerships

Reporting Advancements in CCS - Pittsburgh, Pa.
Sallie E. Greenberg, assistant director of Illinois State Geological Survey’s Advanced Energy Technology Initiative at the University of Illinois, discusses her work on carbon storage at the NETL Regional Carbon Sequestration meeting.

Stop #11: Consumers Energy Karn/Weadock Plant

Helping Michigan Survive and Thrive - Bay City, Mich
Consumers Energy Plant Manager, Dennis Dobbs, takes Steve Gates on a private tour of the Karn/Weadock generating facility and the site of a proposed expansion project. The new 830-megawatt coal plant will be equipped with the latest scrubber technologies to meet environmental regulations.

Stop #12: Holcomb Expansion Project

Holcomb Expansion Project - Kansas
The Factuality Tour traveled all over Kansas to get a better understanding of the importance of baseload power and the impact this project will have on the state. Learn about the economic impact the Holcomb Expansion Project will have on Kansas, providing new jobs and bringing much needed income to the local economy.

Stop #13: University of Charleston Forum on Coal

AEP's Mountaineer Plant - West Virginia
The Factuality Tour visits West Virginia to hear from Senator Jay Rockefeller and Secretary of Energy Steven Chu on the importance of coal to the region and the progress being made on Carbon Capture Technology. We also traveled to the Mountaineer Plant, a coal-fired plant where carbon has been captured and stored. (Note: This project is currently on hold due to regulatory reasons as well as other factors.)

Stop #14: Southwestern Pennsylvania

Southwestern Pennsylvania - Coal Country
Southwestern Pennsylvania is coal country. The America’s Power Tour spent a week there learning about the importance of coal and affordable coal-based electricity – not only to Southwestern Pennsylvania, but the entire country as well. Meet Mayor Blair Zimmerman and Commissioner Pam Snyder of Waynesburg, PA, a town with a past and future built around the coal industry. In Charleroi, PA, you’ll meet Mike Lee, president of a supply company that depends on the coal mining industry for much of its business. In Pittsburgh we talk with Ken Zapinski of the Allegheny Conference.

Stop #15: Central Ohio

A Tour Through The Heart of Ohio - Central Ohio
More than 80 percent of Ohio’s electricity is generated by coal. Leaders throughout Ohio know that fact, and they know that a spike in electricity prices caused by newly proposed federal regulations on coal-generated power would have a devastating effect on the people and businesses of their state. We hear from the mayors of Orrville and Barnesville, a city councilman from Newark and an Ohio state representative.

Stop #16: Rates, regulations and the risk to the Show Me State.

Potential Effects of Proposed EPA Regulations - Missouri - St. Louis, MO
Missouri is a state of great diversity, in both its people and industries. It’s also a state where more than 80 percent of electricity is generated by coal. The America’s Power Tour visited two of the country’s largest coal suppliers – both based in St. Louis - a professor and a small business owner for a variety of viewpoints on the potential effects of higher electricity rates that could come as a result of proposed EPA regulations.

The Facts on Coal-Based Electricity

Click on any one of the infographics below and learn how coal electricity saves American families and businesses money.