Kentucky Coal Plants’ Permits Sent Back to Drawing Board
Thursday, July 5, 2012
On June 22, 2012, ELPC and our clients achieved significant successes in our effort to defeat two proposed coal gasification plants in Western Kentucky – the “Cash Creek” facility in Henderson County and the “NewGas” facility in Mehlenberg County.
ELPC and our clients had petitioned the U.S. EPA to object to the combined operating/construction permits issued to the plants by the Kentucky Department of Air Quality (KDAQ) under the Clean Air Act. The federal agency granted our petitions on multiple grounds, holding that KDAQ violated public participation requirements and issued permits that failed to take into account all forms of pollution, including those generated from the flare during malfunctions and shutdowns. Additionally, U.S. EPA found that Cash Creek’s permit was too vague regarding controls of particulate pollution from “material handling” (coal piles and roads).
U.S. EPA’s objections require KDAQ to correct the legal failures in the permits, reissue both permits in draft form, and provide a new opportunity for public comment on the revised permits.