Superior, Wisconsin, was once home to booming industries, which have all but disappeared. But recently, a new opportunity for economic development came knocking: a 625 megawatt gas-fired power plant on the banks of the Nemadji River, which feeds into Lake Superior.
While for some this sounds promising, for others in Superior and nearby communities, there are serious concerns: not only would the plant contribute billions of tons of carbon emissions over its lifetime, contributing to climate change, but it would also require destroying wetlands along the river, the very wetlands that help to reduce the flooding that have ravaged this community in recent years from heavy rain events.
Plus, the plant would require more water each day than the entire City of Superior uses per day, threatening to put a strain on the groundwater many people rely on.
In this episode, we go to the banks of the Nemadji River in Superior to talk with local residents and learn about what this gas plant could mean for the area if it is built.
Learn more about this proposed project and sign up for updates about ways you can help block this plant at www.cleanwisconsin.org/stop-nemadji
- We bust the myth that gas plants help support renewable energy, as the utilities behind this proposed plant have argued.
- We don’t get into it in the episode, but a big reason why we don’t need gas plants is because of the rise of energy storage solutions. We
unpack how batteries will play a role in Wisconsin’s energy future.
- Katie Nekola mentions that the lifespan of this plant conflicts with Gov. Evers’ goal to have Wisconsin carbon-free by 2050, which he announced in August 2019. We delve into the governor’s goal and why it matters.
- You can watch our video on this issue, which features many of the people you heard in the episode.
Special thanks to…
Dr. Jonathan Patz of the Global Health
Institute at the University of Wisconsin-Madison; Pastor Bridget Jones of Bethel Lutheran Church in Superior; Sandy Gokee of the Red Cliff Band of the Lake Superior Chippewa; and Katie Nekola of Clean Wisconsin.
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