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SUNY Binghamton Power Plant

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The State University of New York Binghamton Power Plant is a coal-fired plant on the edge of campus that produces the majority of the university's electricity. The plant uses mostly coal, some natural gas, and some biomass in the form of wood chips.[1]

In September 2009 the Sierra Club kicked off a nationwide campaign to reduce coal usage at college campuses at SUNY Binghamton. The student group BU Beyond Coal called on the university to stop using coal to generate its electricity.[2]

In response to the possibility of using more biomass at the plant, SUNY Binghamton's assistant director of media relations Ryan Yarosh responded that: "The amount of heat generated from this small boiler with 100 percent wood fuel can adequately supply our summer load but is insufficient for the winter demand. For our winter heating, it is necessary for us to supplement with other fuels. Considering the fact that New York state is in a seeming insurmountable budget deficit, it would not be prudent for the university to choose a more costly fuel [like] natural gas, when we have the capability to utilize cheaper fuels to meet our heating demand. We are also cognizant of potential environmental consequences of over-demand on biomass fuels. With more and more companies and institutions starting to burn wood to offset other fossil fuel usage, there will eventually be a shortage in wood fuel supply."[1]

Resources

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Anne C. Mulkern,"LOBBYING: Colleges are battlegrounds for coal fight" E&E, October 14, 2009
  2. "Week of Protests at SUNY-Binghamton" The Bridge, November 18, 2009

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