Venice Power Plant has 11 groundwater monitoring wells, 11 of which have been polluted above federal advisory levels based on samples collected between September 23, 2011 and December 07, 2011. Groundwater at this site contains unsafe levels of arsenic, manganese, boron, sulfate and nitrate.Site description
Ameren Corporation's Venice Power Plant is a natural gas and oil-fired combustion turbine (CTG) power plant located on the east side of the Mississippi River. The plant originally operated as a coal-fired plant from 1942 until the mid-1970s, when it was converted to burn natural gas and oil. The plant burned down in 2003, and three new natural gas units were installed starting in 2004.
The site's two coal ash ponds have not received new ash since 1977, though they continued to receive process wastewater and storm water runoff. In 2005, a new water treatment facility was constructed, and since then the ponds have not received any water except from rain and snow. Ameren announced plans to close the former ash ponds in 2010, and at the time, the ponds held 1,425,500 cubic yards of coal combustion byproducts. According to the plant's 2010 ash pond closure application, ash in the ponds contacts groundwater about 15% of the time, and well gradients change when the Mississippi River reaches high stages.
Venice Power Plant is among the sites on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's list of potential damage cases, indicating that it has potentially polluted groundwater or surface water at levels which threaten human health and the environment. For more information about groundwater at this plant, see EIP's 2010 report, In Harm's Way, and 2011 report, Illinois at Risk.
For more information about plant coal ash impoundments, visit the Prairie Rivers Network's Coal Ash Map.