The Ithaca Journal reported last week that the owners of Tompkins County power plant have proposed “repowering” the facility, which currently burns coal, to burn natural gas.  It also notes that the conversion would reduce emissions and operate more efficiently.  The project would create over 500 construction jobs, plus 90 permanent jobs.  And it would keep the facility on the tax rolls.

We highlight this “repowering” proposal because it reflects what is happening not just in Upstate New York, but all throughout the United States – power plants are moving from dirty coal to cleaner burning natural gas.

And with the nation undergoing a shale gas revolution, we think repowering is a win-win situation.  We can only hope that New York’s leaders make the decision to move forward with shale gas development in the state, so that we can truly begin to reap the benefits that shale gas offers in terms of job creation, state and local taxes and a cleaner environment.