Lake Road Generating Station (MO)

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Lake Road Generating Station was a coal-fired power station owned and operated by Kansas City Power & Light (KCPL) in St. Joseph, Missouri.

Unit 4 was converted from coal-burning to run on natural gas or oil in 2016.[1][2]

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Plant Data

  • Owner/Parent Company: Kansas City Power & Light
  • Plant Nameplate Capacity: 90 MW (Megawatts)
  • Units and In-Service Dates: 90 MW (1966)
  • Location: 1413 Lower Lake Rd., St. Joseph, MO 64504
  • GPS Coordinates: 39.724872, -94.878188
  • Electricity Production: 610,924 MWh (2005)
  • Coal Consumption:
  • Coal Source:
  • Number of Employees:

Emissions Data

  • CO2 Emissions: 715,537 tons (2005)
  • SO2 Emissions: 2,613 tons (2005)
  • SO2 Emissions per MWh: 8.55 lb/MWh
  • NOx Emissions: 2,439 tons (2005)
  • Mercury Emissions:


The plant was originally owned by Aquila. In 2007 Aquila's electric assets in northwest Missouri, including Lake Road, were acquired by historic rival Kansas City Power & Light (via its new parent Great Plains Energy) for US$1.7 billion.[3]

Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from Lake Road Generating Station

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.[4] 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.[5]

Table 1: Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from the Lake Road Generating Station

Type of Impact Annual Incidence Valuation
Deaths 1 $8,600,000
Heart attacks 2 $200,000
Asthma attacks 20 $1,000
Hospital admissions 1 $20,000
Chronic bronchitis 1 $330,000
Asthma ER visits 1 <$1,000

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

Articles and Resources


  1. Steve Everly, " Kansas City Power & Light will stop using coal at some of its generating units," The Kansas City Star, 01/20/2015
  2. Ray Scherer, "KCP&L finishes Lake Road changes," St. Joseph News-Press, July 15, 2016
  3. Black Hills offers Kan. regulators new deal on Aquila gas buy Kansas City, February 13, 2008
  4. "The Toll from Coal: An Updated Assessment of Death and Disease from America's Dirtiest Energy Source," Clean Air Task Force, September 2010.
  5. "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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