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UPDATED: EPA Says New Plan Would Cut Smog and Save Jobs

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Agency official also says the new proposal for the Four Corners Power Plant would cost less to implement

Federal officials unveiled a plan Friday to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions at a coal-fired power plant in New Mexico where the Arizona Public Service four months ago proposed installing strict pollution-control measures.

Under the Environmental Protection Agency’s latest proposal, smog-causing nitrogen oxides at the Four Corners Power Plant would be reduced from 45,000 tons per year to 5,800 tons per year, a reduction of 3,200 fewer tons from the federal agency’s initial plan.

The EPA said the latest plan would reduce emissions by 87 percent, rather than 80 percent as initially proposed.

The agency is seeking public comment through May 2 and announced plans to stage four public hearings in the Four Corners area to discuss the proposal during the week of March 28.

In October, the EPA required the power company to require pollution controls at the Farmington-area plant, which along with the nearby Navajo Mine that produces its coal supply, employs about 1,000 people — about 75 percent of them Native Americans.

In response to that proposal, Arizona Public Service suggested an alternative plan that would require operators to install selective catalytic reduction technology — the most stringent pollution control measures — on two of the five coal-fired boilers and shut down the three older ones.

“The new proposal controls emissions better, while costing less and preserving jobs,” EPA regional administrator Jared Blumenfeld said.

An APS spokesman said the utility was reviewing the latest EPA proposal and had no immediate comment.

“This plant is the nation’s largest source of nitrogen oxides,” Blumenfeld said. “By reducing its emissions by 87 percent, rather than our initial proposal of 80 percent, we will all be able to see the results and breathe cleaner, healthier air.”

Activist groups have complained that smog in the region has decreased visibility and harmed the experience for visitors at nearby attractions such as Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado.

The Navajo Nation Council is scheduled to meet next week in a special session to consider extending the lease for the Four Corners plant by 25 years. The lease currently is set to expire in 2016.

 

 


 

Friday, 11 February 2011 12:47

 

Federal officials unveiled a plan Friday to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions at a coal-fired power plant in New Mexico where the Arizona Public Service four months ago proposed installing strict pollution-control measures.

Under the Environmental Protection Agency’s latest proposal, smog-causing nitrogen oxides at the Four Corners Power Plant would be reduced from 45,000 tons per year to 5,800 tons per year, a reduction of 3,200 fewer tons from the federal agency’s initial plan.

The EPA said the plan would reduce emissions by 87 percent, rather than 80 percent as initially proposed.

The agency is seeking public comment through May 2 and announced plans to stage four public hearings in the Four Corners area to discuss the proposal during the week of March 28.

In October, the EPA required the power company to require pollution controls at the Farmington-area plant, which along with the nearby Navajo Mine that produces its coal supply, employs about 1,000 people — about 75 percent of them Native Americans.

In response to that proposal, Arizona Public Service suggested an alternative plan that would require operators to install selective catalytic reduction technology — the most stringent pollution control measures — on two of the five coal-fired boilers and shut down the three older ones.

“The new proposal controls emissions better, while costing less and preserving jobs,” EPA regional administrator Jared Blumenfeld said in a news release.

An APS spokesman said the utility was reviewing the latest EPA proposal and had no immediate comment.

“This plant is the nation’s largest source of nitrogen oxides,” Blumenfeld said. “By reducing its emissions by 87 percent, rather than our initial proposal of 80 percent, we will all be able to see the results and breathe cleaner, healthier air.”

Activist groups have complained that smog in the region has decreased visibility and harmed the experience for visitors at nearby attractions such as Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado.

 

 


 

Friday, 11 February 2011 11:40

 

Federal environmental regulators have come up with a new plan to reduce smog produced at a coal-fired power plant in northwest New Mexico.

Under the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposal announced Friday, smog-causing nitrogen oxides at the Four Corners Power Plant would be reduced from 45,000 tons per year to 5,800 tons per year, a reduction of 3,200 fewer tons from the EPA’s initial plan.

The EPA says the plan would reduce emissions by 87 percent, rather than 80 percent as initially proposed.

EPA regional administrator Jared Blumenfeld says the latest proposal will control emissions better while costing less to implement and saving jobs at the Farmington-area plant.

The plant is operated by Arizona Public Service.

 

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