Aug 6, 2011

EPA Could Cost PNM $750 Million and Kill Jobs

Four Corners Power Plant
The Daily Times - FARMINGTON — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Friday ruled that San Juan Generating Station will be required to install expensive pollution controls to dramatically reduce emissions from the coal-burning power plant. The EPA ruling gives the plant's operator, Public Service Company of New Mexico, five years to comply. PNM immediately announced it would appeal the ruling. The agency's plan sets strict limits on nitrogen oxide emissions, which are linked to haze. The agency said its plan would reduce nitrogen oxide pollution by more than 80 percent. That would improve visibility at Mesa Verde National Park and 15 other federally protected areas, and benefit public health, the agency said. Local elected officials, business groups and PNM waged a fierce campaign to persuade the EPA that a less restrictive state plan would be adequate to cut pollution. The EPA turned away those efforts in announcing that selective catalytic reduction technology is necessary to cut pollution. PNM estimates installing that technology would cost more than $750 million and call into question the plant's long-term viability. The federal agency counters with its own estimate that the requirements will cost only about $229 million. Environmental groups hailed the ruling as a long-overdue reckoning for a major polluter. Read full story here: News New Mexico

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