Friday, January 9, 2009

Coal fired power plant disaster in USA causes jitter among Sabahans

SANDAKAN: A mishap at an American coal fired power plant is causing jitters among the people in this Sabah coast district where a similar facility has been proposed.

The collapse of storage pond wall at the Kingston coal fired plant in the Tennessee has left people here wondering if they would one day face such an environmental disaster.

Elopura state asemblyman Au Kam Wah said various news reports stated that about 5.4mil cubic metres of wet coal ash enough to deluge an area of 1,200ha had spilt after the collapse of the storage pond wall at the coal fired plant on Dec 22 last year.

“If a situation like this can happen in the US, is it not inconceivable that we would face similar consequences one day,” Au said early last week.

Au said the state government should seriously reconsider the proposal to build the coal fired power plant in Sandakan amidst the growing health concerns.

“We have to take into consideration the safety and health of the people and that of the future generations, the negative impact on the environment before making a decision to implement the project in Sandakan,” he added.

Au called on the State Government to look into other alternative means of power generation, adding that a coal fired plant was not an appropriate choice as shown by the latest disaster in the US.

The Star 5th January 2009.
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