N.M. AG appeals proposed coal plant

Drew Smith Oct. 2, 2008, 11:53am

Gary King (D)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (Legal Newsline) -- New Mexico Attorney General Gary King filed a brief today in support of the state's appeal to the EPA's issuance of an air quality permit for the proposed Desert Rock coal-fired power plant.

King crafted the appeal in collaboration with the state's Environment Department. Tt was filed with the federal Environment Appeals Board in Washington. The board has the authority to remand the permit if it agrees with the state.

King is arguing the EPA acted in a way that was contrary to law.

"The EAB can and should send this permit back to the EPA with an order to reevaluate specific issues that we have outlined in our brief," King said. "The EPA has a legal obligation to give New Mexicans the full protections afforded to them under the Clean Air Act. The problem here is that EPA cut corners to get this permit out the door and ignored some real problems."

King's appeal claims the EPA failed to adhere to the U.S. Endangered Species Act, failed to properly analyze emissions of hazardous pollutants and improperly regulating Desert Rock's expected carbon dioxide emissions.

The proposed plant is to be located in the northwest part of the state.

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