People In Alexandria Get A Breathe Of Fresh Air | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

: News

People In Alexandria Get A Breathe Of Fresh Air

Play associated audio

By Michael Pope

Residents in Alexandria, Virginia, can breathe easier, next year. That's when new technology will be installed at a coal-fired power plant on the city’s waterfront. The improvement to air quality comes thanks to a $34 million settlement the city reached back in 2008 with Atlanta-based energy company Mirant. Environmental director Bill Srabak says the money will pay for technology to reduce particulate matter released into the atmosphere.

"We have to remember where we started from, which was Mirant basically saying, ‘There’s no way you can install this technology at this facility.' It doesn't make sense," says Srabak.

Progress has been slow since the 2008 settlement. A plan to install drip pans was put on hold after permit modifications were requested. And the cost of a new windscreen to control fugitive dust more than doubled after city officials realized the condition of the soil at the site, causing Councilman Paul Smedberg to question the other cost estimates.

"If we were surprised by soil, I can only imagine what we’re going to be surprised by when we actually get into that facility and really look at how this thing is going to work," he says.

Improvements could come as early as November 2011.

NPR

Between The Laughs, South African Comedian Hopes To Educate

Trevor Noah, a new international correspondent on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, turns a sharp eye on American policy — while answering the questions about world news that people are afraid to ask.
NPR

Will Environmentalists Fall For Faux Fish Made From Plants?

A handful of chefs and food companies are experimenting with fish-like alternatives to seafood. But the market is still a few steps behind plant-based products for meat and dairy.
NPR

Republicans Gather To Galvanize, Share Ideas At 'Freedom Summit'

On Saturday, prominent Republicans from across the country headed to Iowa for the annual Freedom Summit, which supports "pro-growth economics, social conservatism and a strong national defense."
NPR

Facebook Aims To Weed Fakes From Your News Feed

No, Macauley Culkin didn't die — that was a fake news story you saw on Facebook. This week, Facebook added a feature for reporting hoaxes. NPR's Laura Sydell explains the details to Scott Simon.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.