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EPA seeks comment on options to reduce air pollution coming from Four Corners power plants

Release Date: 08/20/2009
Contact Information: Margot Perez-Sullivan, 415.947.4149 Perezsullivan.margot@epa.gov


Action kicks off 30-day public comment period

SAN FRANCISCO– The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is seeking public comment on its technical analysis and options for reducing air pollution from two power plants in the Four Corners area that affect air quality and visibility at nearby national parks, wilderness areas, and national monuments.

The advanced notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR), among other criteria, compares the cost and visibility modeling inputs used by the facilities with those inputs used by the EPA. The agency is providing a 30-day public comment period on the ANPR and is not taking action or proposing a best available retrofit technology determination at this time. The EPA expects to propose the technology that will be used to reduce air pollution coming from the two power plants this fall.
      “This action is a first step towards improving visibility at areas impacted by these two facilities,” said Deborah Jordan, the EPA’s Air Division director for the Pacific Southwest region. “It is important for the public to understand how we evaluate air pollution control technologies and to have input on our process.”

      Although the ANPR focuses on the visibility improvements at the surrounding national park and wilderness areas, and the cost effectiveness of applying best available retrofit technology at the two power plants, the agency will accept comments on other factors, such as the remaining useful life of the facilities, existing controls at the facilities, energy and non-air quality environmental impacts.

      The best available retrofit technology provisions of the regional haze rule require reductions in emissions of air pollutants that impact visibility based on a multi-factor analysis that considers cost effectiveness and the degree of visibility improvements.

      The Four Corners Power Plant and Navajo Generating Station are two of the largest pollution sources in the United States. Air pollution from the Four Corners Power Plant and the Navajo Generating Station impacts many of our most pristine and precious natural areas.

      Additional information on the advanced notice of proposed rulemaking is available on the EPA's Web site at: http://www.epa.gov/region09/air/navajo/index.html