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Springfield Voters Consider Power Plant Issue

On August 3rd voters will be asked whether or not a new coal-fired power plant installation should be constructed in Springfield. Many factors are contributing to a growing debate over whether the plant is even worth building. KSMU's Justin Pointer has the story

"Springfield is in need of energy. City utilities recently conducted studies of the population and the amount of energy consumed. The studies showed that Springfield will be in need of a new source of energy to power the growing community. Their projections show that by 2008 the current plant will not be sufficient and a new power source will be needed.

What is still to be determined however is whether or not a new coal-fired power plant is needed to solve this problem. If approved, the new and updated facility would be constructed right beside the current power plant. Mark Viguet is the Director of Marketing for City Utilities, and he believes that there are a number of benefits to constructing this new facility in Springfield.

But a group called the Southwest Missouri Citizens for Clean Air has voiced opposition to coal-fired power. Stan Van Velsor is a member of the group and gives some reasons why this plant should bot be built.

The issue of pollution has been a concern for many plants that have been built nationwide, but Viguet says that City Utilities is prepared for the challenge of keeping pollution to a minimum.

Once again, Stan Van Velsor

The Southwest Missouri Citizens for Clean Air believe that building the new plant could be put off for years if City Utilities would focus more on warning the public about energy concerns and promoting energy conservation.

City Utilities is currently conducting tours and passing out information to try and inform the public about their views and their plans for the proposed power plant.

For KSMU I'm Justin Pointer"