For decades, tourists heading to the New Jersey beach resorts of Ocean City and Cape May saw the towering smokestack of the B.L. England Generating Station as they zipped past it on the Garden State Parkway.
The 463-foot-tall (141.1-meter) stack was a local landmark and even a weather forecaster for some residents who glanced outside to see which way emissions from its top were blowing, and how fast, as they decided what to wear for the day.
But the power plant, which burned coal and oil over the decades, closed in May 2019, a casualty of the global move away from burning fossil fuels.
And the smokestack, the last major remaining piece of the plant, will be imploded at 10 a.m. EDT Thursday, brought down by explosives strategically placed by a demolition company known in the area for razing the former Trump Plaza casino in nearby Atlantic City in 2021.
The demolition will clear the way for the waterfront site on Great Egg Harbor Bay to enter its next role in providing energy to New Jerseyans: As the connection point for several of the state’s planned offshore wind farms.