The centerpiece of former President Barack Obama's project to turn coal into something acceptable to environmentalists has imploded
literally and figuratively just 11 years after construction began.
Plant Ratcliffe, better known as the Kemper Project, is a $7.5 billion integrated gasification power plant
in Kemper County, eastern Mississippi.
During the early years of the Kemper Project's construction, it was hailed as the "pinnacle of technological progress." It was supposed to be the largest "clean coal" plant in the world that would turn coal into fuel without emitting too much carbon dioxide.
If successful, it would have been the evidence environmentalists needed to not destroy America's fossil fuel industry and leave millions of Americans without a job.
The idea involved turning coal into gas using a new technology known as "Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle." If successfully implemented, the coal used in this plant would have released significantly fewer emissions.
The primary owners of the Kemper Project, Southern Company, promised to install carbon capture technology to prevent up to 65 percent of all carbon emitted by the plant from entering the atmosphere. (Related: TERRAFORMING: Carbon-sucking machine switched on in Iceland, will remove 4,000 tons of CO2 from the atmosphere each year, harming rainforests and food crops
Plant Ratcliffe was supposed to go online in 2014. But by 2017 the project was nowhere near completion and it was already $4 billion over budget. The Southern Company and the Mississippi Public Service Commission
also decided to get rid of the coal gasification and carbon capture portions of the plant, refiguring it to simply run on natural gas like a normal fossil fuel plant.
That was the final nail in the coffin. Political economist Angus Harvey reported that the plant's owner announced in the summer of 2020 that it was abandoning construction and decommissioning the plant "after years of blown-out budgets and missed construction deadlines."
Harvey also pointed out how much taxpayer money was wasted on Plant Ratcliffe. Some estimates suggest that a natural gas plant in Kemper County could have cost taxpayers just $1.5 billion instead of the $7.5 billion they had to shell out.
Parts of Plant Ratcliffe implodes
On the morning of Saturday, Oct. 9, parts of Plant Ratcliffe imploded – literally. Local newspaper The Neshoba Democrat
reported that the sound of the implosion could be heard hundreds of miles away
State Rep. Michael Ted Evans, who represents the area surrounding Plant Ratcliffe, has confirmed the implosion in a post on social media. "They imploded some of the structures at the power plant," Evans writes on his account.
Mississippi Power spokesman Jeff Shepard announces that the whole implosion took around two minutes.
"On Saturday, Mississippi Power safely continued the removal at the site of equipment no longer needed to serve our customers. The plant has been working on removing these parts of the plant for nearly one year and has completed 70,000-man hours of safe equipment removal," says Shepard. "The safety of the surrounding community and the employees at the site is our top priority. We appreciate the community's patience as we continue this process."
He adds that more equipment will be removed on a later date.
Plant manager Bruce Harrington says similar demolitions will take place in the future
"It'll take some time to remove the equipment and steel that came to the ground on Saturday, so we don't have a time frame set on that yet," said Harrington. "Yes, there will be an additional felling."
Shepard and Harrington confirm that some of the equipment used at Plant Ratcliffe will be repurposed at other nearby power plants so that Southern Company can still generate enough power for the 23 counties it services in Mississippi.
Learn more about how the climate alarmism of Democrats and environmentalists is costing American taxpayers by reading the latest articles at ClimateAlarmism.news