As part of a settlement of a lawsuit involving construction of the Oak Creek power plant, WE Energies has announced plans to build a 50-megawatt power plant in Rothschild, Wisconsin. The plant would burn wood, waste wood, and sawdust, and it would generate enough power to supply 40,000 homes. In addition to being part of a settlement of the suit involving the Oak Creek power plant, the proposed biomass plant will also help WE Energies comply with Wisconsin’s renewable power mandate.
While the proposed biomass power plant is certainly a step in the right direction when it comes to generating power from renewable sources, we still have a long way to go. The proposed biomass plant will generate 50 megawatts of power, but to put that number into perspective, the coal-fired power plant in Oak Creek generates 1,200 megawatts of power. There’s absolutely no reason why renewable energy sources such as biomass can’t take the place of non-renewable energy sources like natural gas and coal, and hopefully the proposed biomass power plant in Rothschild will serve as an example of how renewable resources can replace the use of fossil fuels in providing for our energy needs.