The League of Women Voters of New Jersey, along with thirty five environmental, civic, religious and other organizations, have joined a Stop PurGen Coal Plant Coalition, www.stoppurgencoalplant.org
What is PurGen? SCS Energy, a Massachusetts based company, wants to build a plant called PurGen One in Linden, NJ. It would function as an electricity generating plant when electric power prices are high and switch to manufacturing urea, which is used in fertilizers, and sulfuric acid when electricity prices are low.
SCS plans to process coal for energy in Linden and then send a trillion pounds of pressurized, liquid carbon dioxide waste via a 100-mile pipeline through the Raritan Bay and out into the seabed off Atlantic City.
SCS says the carbon dioxide will stay in the ocean floor forever, but they have no proof or scientific evidence to back up their claims.
The LWVNJ board voted to oppose PurGen on the recommendation of its Natural Resources Committee, which cited the following reasons (among others):
- LWVUS called for a 10-year moratorium on new coal-fired generating plants to allow time to study carbon capture and sequestration.
- The proposed site is surrounded by densely populated areas in NJ and Staten Island which would be endangered by an accident.
- Lateral leakage remains a concern.
- Underground mining is hazardous and uses huge amounts of energy; strip mining leaves the ground stripped of vegetation.
- Reducing demand by conservation has always been a major goal for the League.
The Natural Resources Committee is currently working on a full report for membership and it will soon be available on LWVNJ's website, www.lwvnj.org.