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Cromby Generating Station

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This article is part of the Coal Issues portal on SourceWatch, a project of CoalSwarm and the Center for Media and Democracy. See here for help on adding material to CoalSwarm.

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Cromby Generating Station is a coal-fired power station owned and operated by Exelon near Phoenixville, Pennsylvania.

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Exelon announces plan to shut Pennsylvania coal plants

On December 2, 2009, Exelon announced that it would retire Cromby Generating Station and two units at Eddystone Generating Station in 2011. The closures include 144 MW of coal-fired power at Cromby and another 588 MW at Eddystone. Eddystone will continue to operate 820 MW of natural gas- and oil-fired generation. Exelon senior vice president Doyle Beneby said the retirements were due to "decreased power demand, over supply of natural gas and increasing operating costs," adding that, "these aging units are no longer efficient enough to compete with newer resources."[1] The announcement comes just one day after Progress Energy said it would shut 11 aging coal-fired power units totaling almost 1,500 MW in North Carolina.[2]

Plant Data

  • Owner: Exelon Generating Company
  • Parent Company: Exelon
  • Plant Nameplate Capacity: 188 MW (Megawatts)
  • Units and In-Service Dates: 188 MW (1954)
  • Location: 100 Cromby Rd., Phoenixville, PA 19460
  • GPS Coordinates: 40.152977, -75.528931
  • Coal Consumption:
  • Coal Source:
  • Number of Employees:

Emissions Data

  • 2006 CO2 Emissions: 1,062,055 tons
  • 2006 SO2 Emissions:
  • 2006 SO2 Emissions per MWh:
  • 2006 NOx Emissions:
  • 2005 Mercury Emissions:

Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from Cromby

In 2010, Abt Associates issued a study commissioned by the Clean Air Task Force, a nonprofit research and advocacy organization, quantifying the deaths and other health effects attributable to fine particle pollution from coal-fired power plants.[3] Fine particle pollution consists of a complex mixture of soot, heavy metals, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen oxides. Among these particles, the most dangerous are those less than 2.5 microns in diameter, which are so tiny that they can evade the lung's natural defenses, enter the bloodstream, and be transported to vital organs. Impacts are especially severe among the elderly, children, and those with respiratory disease. The study found that over 13,000 deaths and tens of thousands of cases of chronic bronchitis, acute bronchitis, asthma, congestive heart failure, acute myocardial infarction, dysrhythmia, ischemic heart disease, chronic lung disease, and pneumonia each year are attributable to fine particle pollution from U.S. coal plant emissions. These deaths and illnesses are major examples of coal's external costs, i.e. uncompensated harms inflicted upon the public at large. Low-income and minority populations are disproportionately impacted as well, due to the tendency of companies to avoid locating power plants upwind of affluent communities. To monetize the health impact of fine particle pollution from each coal plant, Abt assigned a value of $7,300,000 to each 2010 mortality, based on a range of government and private studies. Valuations of illnesses ranged from $52 for an asthma episode to $440,000 for a case of chronic bronchitis.[4]

Table 1: Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from Cromby Generating Station

Type of Impact Annual Incidence Valuation
Deaths 5 $33,000,000
Heart attacks 8 $880,000
Asthma attacks 74 $4,000
Hospital admissions 3 $85,000
Chronic bronchitis 3 $1,200,000
Asthma ER visits 3 $1,000

Source: "Find Your Risk from Power Plant Pollution," Clean Air Task Force interactive table, accessed March 2011

Articles and Resources

Sources

  1. "Exelon to retire 933 MW of capacity in 2011," Power Engineering, December 2, 2009.
  2. Progress Energy
  3. "The Toll from Coal: An Updated Assessment of Death and Disease from America's Dirtiest Energy Source," Clean Air Task Force, September 2010.
  4. "Technical Support Document for the Powerplant Impact Estimator Software Tool," Prepared for the Clean Air Task Force by Abt Associates, July 2010

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