Sutherland Generating Station Unit 4

From SourceWatch
Jump to navigation Jump to search

{{#badges: CoalSwarm}} Sutherland Generating Station Unit 4 is a coal plant that was proposed by Interstate Power and Light Company, a subsidiary of Alliant Energy Corporation. The plant was to be be built in Marshalltown, Iowa, but was cancelled in 2009.[1]


The plant will utilize supercritical technology and be located next to the company’s Sutherland Generating Station, a natural gas-fired 140-MW plant.[2] The plant is being designed so as to potentially allow some of the boilers to burn switchgrass and other biomass fuels. The company filed a siting application with the Iowa Utilities Board on July 2, 2007, and expects a decision in early 2008.[3]

In October 22, 2007, Iowa Office of Consumer Advocate, a state agency, recommended that the plant be rejected in favor of more cost effective and environmentally sound alternatives. On Nov. 28, 2007, the Central Iowa Power Cooperative, the Corn Belt Power Cooperative, and the North Iowa Municipal Electric Cooperative Association signed a joint operating agreement with IPL. [4]


In April 2008, the Iowa Utility Board approved the proposed coal-fired power plant.[5] On May 15 2008, about 100 anti-coal protesters picketed outside Alliant Energy's annual shareholder meeting.[6]

On August 26th, 2008 Iowa's Utility Board issued an order allowing Alliant Energy to build the plant. The board included provisions requiring the plant to generate a portion of its energy from biomass and renewable resources. The board also reserved the right of to require Alliant to install carbon capture technology if and when it becomes available.[7]


On March 5, 2009 Interstate Power and Light Company announced that it was canceling the Sutherland plant. The company said the decision was based on a combination of factors, including the financial climate and concerns about the possibility of future regulation of greenhouse gas emissions.[8]

Project Details

Dr. James Hansen comments on Sutherland Station

Sponsor: Interstate Power and Light
Location: Marshalltown, Iowa
Capacity: 600 MW
Type: Supercritical
Projected in service: 2013
Status: Cancelled


Citizen Groups



  • Petition to Intervene (drafted by Plains Justice on behalf of Coalition partners Community Energy Solutions, Iowa Chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility, Iowa Farmers Union, Iowa Environmental Council, and Iowa Renewable Energy Association) (PDF file)
  • Testimony of Dr. James Hansen, Director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (PDF file)
  • Testimony of Dr. Neil Harl, Professor Emeritus of Agriculture and Economics at Iowa State University (PDF file)
  • Testimony of Thomas Sanzillo, Senior Associate, TR Rose Associates, and Former First Deputy Comptroller for the State of New York (PDF file)
  • Testimony of Dr. Kristin Welker-Hood, Director of Environment and Health Programs, Physicians for Social Responsibility (PDF file)


  1. “Tracking New Coal-Fired Power Plants,” National Energy Tech Lab, May 1, 2007, page 12. (Pdf)
  2. "Stopping the Coal Rush", Sierra Club, accessed December 2007. (This is a Sierra Club list of new coal plant proposals.)
  3. "Interstate Power and Light Company Files for Approval to Construct Sutherland Generating Station Unit Four", Alliant Energy press release, July 2, 2007.
  4. "Sutherland Power Plant Partners Sign Agreement", Corn Belt Power Cooperative website, November 28, 2007.
  5. "Iowa Utility Board Approval of Marshalltown Coal-Based Power Plant Lauded by Clean Coal Proponents", PR Newswire, May 1, 2008.
  6. "Coal-Plant Opponents Protest Alliant Energy Shareholders Meeting" , Wisconsin State Journal, May 15, 2008.
  7. "Stopping the Coal Rush", Sierra Club, accessed November 2008. (This is a Sierra Club list of new coal plant proposals.)
  8. "Plans cancelled for proposed Sutherland Generating Station Unit 4 hybrid power plant," Alliant Energy, March 5, 2009.

Related SourceWatch Articles

<us_map redirect="{state} and coal"></us_map>

External links