Controversy over proposed power plants

May 5, 2008 11:54:02 AM PDT
Environmental activists in San Francisco are demanding the board of supervisors reject a proposed new power plant. The new plant would replace an older one next to the Bayview Hunters Point, Potrero District. It's blamed for causing severe pollution.

Supervisor Sophie Maxwell has gone on record to say that she wants those new plants because they will be cleaner environmentally then the current situation. Environmentalists have a different take. Environmental organizations rallied outside city hall to try and persuade supervisors to not build the four new power plants. They are demanding that three new power plants in the Bay View district and one near San Francisco International be stopped. Instead environmentalists want the mayor and the city to invest in renewable energy.

The proposal calls for shutting down the aging and polluting Potrero Hill power plants and opening four cleaner more efficient power plants. Public Utilities Commission said the newer plants would produce half the pollution of the older plants. It is in all a $273 million project that has many divided on what should happen.

"The organizations that have studied this are pushing the Mayor and the Board of Supervisors to go one step further and say we are building no power plants. So that's the purpose of the rally here today is to elevate that. Bring out more and more elected officials that believe as we do that, we can push back," said Joshua Arce, Brightline.

"There are no alternatives that can close this power plant that the regulatory body of California will accept. There's no plan that PG&E has given them that they say has supporting documents that will make this happen. This is the only alternative, the only thing they have given us that will make this happen," said Maxwell.

Supervisor Maxwell said the sooner those four new power plants can be open, the sooner the old aging ones can be shutdown. The power plant proposal is still under review. If it is passed out of the committee on Monday, then it could go before the full board of supervisors next week.


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