Portland General Electric's proposed 2020 closure of their Boardman coal-fired power plant is flawed, according to the Oregon Sierra Club.
If the new option were approved by the Department of Environmental Quality next month, the Boardman plant would be closed no later than the end of 2020 and eliminate the possibility that it could operate until 2040. PGE’s latest proposal is expected to cut sulfur-dioxide emissions at the plant by 35 percent beginning in 2014 and by 51 percent beginning in 2018, but [Director of the Oregon Sierra Club’s Move Beyond Coal campaign Cesia] Kearns said the suite of pollution controls being proposed would still leave PGE in violation of the federal Clean Air Act.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency last month issued PGE a notice of violation of the Clean Air Act for running the Boardman plant for the past 12 years with inadequate pollution controls. Kearns said her group was not invited to participate in the latest round of discussions between PGE and Northwest environmental and ratepayer groups. The Oregon Sierra Club maintains that Boardman should be shut down much sooner than 2020, perhaps within the next five years, to avoid penalty under the Clean Air Act.
“The latest news (on PGE’s agreement with the Oregon Environmental Council and others) sets up a false choice between solving climate change and cleaning up air quality,” Kearns said. “We feel PGE can develop clean replacement energy at Boardman, take advantage of renewable energy replacement opportunities and not pollute the air in the meantime. We hope the DEQ will reject this plan based on its flaws and continue to do the right thing for Oregon.”
Read more at the Daily Journal of Commerce.
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