October 30, 2006

Funny numbers

The Power Workers’ Union (PWU) is once again running newspaper advertisements that blow smoke over the issue of emissions from coal-fired power generation.  The PWU ads baldly state that “Clean coal emits 96.4% less pollution.”  Not in Ontario, that’s for sure.

Further digging on the PWU’s website reveals that this big number is really little more than the union’s own pipe dream.  The 96% figure actually applies only to the sulphur dioxide emission reductions that could be achieved by installing end-of-pipe pollution control technologies.  Unfortunately, sulphur dioxide is only one of the more than 80 toxic pollutants emitted by our coal-fired power plants. 

At best, end-of-pipe pollution control technologies can only reduce the total emissions of Ontario’s coal plants by one-half of 1% at a total cost of over $3 billion.  This is a band-aid solution that the people of Ontario cannot afford.  Most alarmingly, end-of-pipe pollution controls would do nothing to reduce the coal plants’ greenhouse gas emissions that cause dangerous climate change.  Ontario Power Generation, which owns these coal-fired power plants, is Canada’s largest corporate greenhouse gas emitter.

Isn’t it time the PWU really came clean with the people of Ontario?

Please pass this message on to your friends.

Thank you

Jessica Fracassi
Communications & Membership Manager
402-625 Church St, Toronto M4Y 2G1
Phone: 416-926-1907 ext. 245
Fax: 416-926-1601
Email: info@cleanair.web.ca
Website: www.cleanairalliance.org