What will be released

November 19, 2008 

When fully built, Santee Cooper’s proposed plant near Pamplico would burn more than 200 tons of coal an hour in a 2,000-degree Fahrenheit furnace.

Besides heated vapors containing mercury, thousands of tons of other hot, gaseous pollutants would be released from its 650-foot smokestack.

Among them:

• NITROGEN OXIDES, which contribute to acid rain, unhealthy ground-level ozone and various lung diseases. Amount DHEC is considering approving for release: Up to 3,495 tons a year

• SULFUR DIOXIDE, which worsens heart conditions and respiratory diseases such as asthma and pollutes waterways. Amount DHEC is considering approving for release: 5,992 tons a year

• INHALABLE COARSE PARTICLES, known as particle pollution, made up of tiny grains of metal, chemicals, dust and other substances. The particles damage lungs and aggravate heart problems. Amount DHEC is considering approving for release: 898 tons a year

• CARBON DIOXIDE, a major heat-trapping greenhouse gas blamed for climate change. No existing technology sharply reduces carbon dioxide. Amount plant would release: 9 million tons a year

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