Everyone around here thought that the Tyrone Power Plant was dead, and that the site would likely remain vacant forever. However, a few months back Xcel Energy announced possible plans to build a new power plant on the Tyrone site.  Not a nuclear plant this time around, but a large (750 MegaWatt) coal-fired plant to generate power to ship out of state.

This raises a slew of issues.  Building a power plant at the propsed site would disrupt the ecology of a unique area in the state, part of the Lower Chippewa Valley River Basin.  It would also involve disrupting existing bike trails to reinstate rail service to the plant.

Additionally, a large coal-fired power plant would have potential health risks (particulate air pollution, mercury pollution, asthma increases, etc.) associated with it, and would put a heavy thermal load on the Chippewa River.

The Chippewa Valley Sustainable Energy Association has  been formed to look into the problems associated with this proposed power plant, and to  discuss these issues with Xcel and local government agencies.