Web Tracking Tool Shows SO2 Reductions at Coal Plants
New interactive tracking tools are available on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Web site to help the public follow nationwide changes in sulfur dioxide (SO2) emissions from coal-fired power plants.
Using interactive charts and Google Earth satellite maps, the public can now observe recent changes in SO2 emissions and other indicators at individual coal-fired power plants in the Acid Rain Program.
The Acid Rain Program was established under the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments requiring power plants to reduce emissions of SO2 and nitrogen oxides (NOx)—the primary causes of acid rain. Since 1995, the program has achieved significant environmental and public health benefits. In 2008, electric generating units subject to the market-based cap and trade SO2 program emitted 7.6 million tons of SO2, well below the current annual emission cap of 9.5 million tons.