The boilers at the Mohave Generating Station in Laughlin, Nevada, were imploded on June 8. The 40-year-old coal-fired power plant was shuttered in 2005 after hundreds of thousands of pollution violations prompted the Sierra Club and allied groups to take action to retire the plant.
The plant's smokestack was taken down two years ago, and the boilers were scheduled to come down this April, but the implosion was delayed after a Great Horned Owl's nest containing unhatched eggs was found resting on an I-beam. The owls are protected and could not be moved until the eggs hatched. In mid-May, the newborn chicks were moved to a wildlife rehabilitator and will be released into the wild when they are ready.
The Mohave Generating Station was the dirtiest coal plant in the West. It amassed more than 400,000 violations of pollution protection laws between 1993-1998 alone, regularlly depositing coal ash on nearby communities, imperiling the health of area residents, and obscuring views in Grand Canyon National Park.
In 1999, an alliance of conservation groups including the Sierra Club, Grand Canyon Trust and National Parks Conservation Association secured a court order that gave the plant's owners five years to decide if they would install the required pollution controls or shut the plant down. Mohave's owners chose the latter option, and the plant was finally retired on December 31, 2005.