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Navajo Reservation Coal Plant EPA Hearings

November 08
23:59 2013

smoke_smallNavajo Generating Station’s future as a reservation coal plant will be the subject of upcoming hearings scheduled by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The 2,250 megawatt power coal-fired power plant is located on the Navajo Nation, near Page, Arizona and the Utah state line.

On September 25, 2013, the EPA announced it had accepted a supplemental proposal for consideration to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions from Navajo Generating Station (NGS). EPA supplemented their February 5, 2013 proposed rulemaking with the additional Alternative to BART submitted by a group of stakeholders known as the Technical Work Group (TWG). The TWG Alternative to BART requires that Navajo Generating Station reduce emissions of oxides of nitrogen over time. These pollutants, according to the EPA, contribute to visibility impairment in numerous national parks and wilderness areas surrounding NGS. EPA is accepting comment on their February 5, 2013 proposed rulemaking and the TWG Supplemental Proposal concurrently until January 6, 2014.

The coalition, known as the Technical Work Group (TWG), is composed of the Central Arizona Water Conservation District, the Environmental Defense Fund, the Gila River Indian Community, Navajo Nation, the Salt River Project Agricultural Improvement District, the Department of the Interior and Western Resources Advocates.

Salt River Project (SRP) previously hosted a community meeting in Page offering more insight into the Technical Work Group proposal for the Navajo Generating Station. According to SRP, given the most likely ownership situation, the terms of the TWG proposal call for one of the units to be shut down or substantially reduce generation by 2020 and the implementation of additional environmental controls at the plant would be delayed until 2030. Los Angeles Department of Water & Power and NV Energy are expected to exit NGS by 2019. As far as possible job losses, more than enough employees will be retired by the time fewer employees are needed according to NGS Plant Manager, Robert Talbot. One of the main benefits of the TWG proposal is the time and flexibilty it affords to explore options and see how ownership options play out in the future.

This week, EPA will be hosting public hearings on the Navajo Generating Station proposed rulemaking as follows:

November 12: LeChee, Ariz. Open House/Hearing: 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. LeChee Chapter House (Coppermine Road, 3 miles south of Page)

November 12: Page, Ariz. Open House: 3 p.m. – 5 p.m., Public Hearing: 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. Page High School Cultural Arts Building, 434 Lake Powell Blvd.

November 13: Kykotsmovi Village Open House: 3 p.m. – 5 p.m., Public Hearing: 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. Hopi Day School, Quarter-mile East Main Street

November 14: Phoenix, Ariz. Open House: 3 p.m. – 5 p.m., Public Hearing: 6 p.m. – 10 p.m. Phoenix Convention Center,100 North 3rd Street

November 15: Tucson, Ariz.Open House: 3 p.m. – 5 p.m., Public Hearing: 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.Pima Community College West Campus, Proscenium Theatre, Center for the Arts Building(2 miles west of I-10 on St. Mary’s Road)

For additional information on the proposed rulemaking and opportunities to provide input, please go to: http://www.epa.gov/region9/air/navajo/index.html#proposed

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