Beacon Harbor seeks help from New York board on power plant

The New York Board on Electric Generation Siting and the Environment said on Oct. 5 that it has gotten a petition from Beacon Harbor LLC for a declaratory ruling concerning the state’s Article 10 law on power plant siting.

Beacon Harbor is contemplating becoming an applicant for an Article 10 Certificate to construct and operate a major waste-to-energy electric generating facility at a site in the town of Bethlehem in Albany County on the Hudson River. In a Sept. 13 petition, Beacon said this plant would be a municipal solid waste gasification facility that would use syngas to fire a boiler and furance, with the resulting steam going into a turbine. It sought from the board declaratory rulings on two issues.

  • Beacon’s first request regards Bethlehem’s Zoning Ordinance. Beacon requested a ruling on whether a zoning ordinance that prohibits major electric generating facilities and waste-to-energy facilities on the basis that uses not enumerated are prohibited is the kind of local law that the Siting Board has the authority to find to be unreasonably restrictive.
  • Beacon’s second request regards a certain flow control restriction of the Solid Waste Law of the town of Bethlehem. The local law states that “only solid wastes generated and collected within the Town of Bethlehem and which are not otherwise prohibited will be accepted at any solid waste facility within the Town.” Beacon wants to import solid waste into the town to use as fuel at its facility and requested a ruling on whether the flow control restriction is the kind of a local law that the Siting Board has the authority to find to be unreasonably restrictive.

On or before Oct. 26, Beacon needs to either provide written notice that it is withdrawing all or part of its petition and/or it needs supplement its petition in the manner requested, the board said. Thereafter, if Beacon has not withdrawn its petition, responses to the petition as supplemented are due on Nov. 16. The board said Beacon needs to show whether it can build the plant under the current zoning law under zoning sections that it has apparently not considered. The board also said it needs more information on the second issue of flow control restriction.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.