The disproportionate greenhouse impact of a small portion of U.S. power plants shows how damaging inefficiency and inertia can be.
>That one percent is actually 50 plants, all of them coal-fired. In fact, America’s single dirtiest power plant — Georgia Power’s Plant Scherer — dumped over 21 million metric tons (MMT) of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere in 2011. That’s more than all the energy-related emissions produced by the state of Maine that year.
And the disproportionate contribution of the dirtiest plants to greenhouse gas emissions continues on down the scale: in 2011, half of all the power sector’s carbon emissions came from the 100 dirtiest plants (98 of which are coal-fired). And 90 percent of all those emissions came from just the 500 dirtiest power plants. That’s out of almost 6,000 electricity generating facilities — renewable and fossil-fuel-powered alike — in the country.<
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