Salt River Project seeks rejection of permit appeal related to Navajo coal plant

The Salt River Project Agricultural Improvement and Power District (SRP) on June 16 filed a response at the U.S. Environmental Appeals Board to a May 23 petition filed by a private citizen, Shawn Dolan, appealing the compliance monitoring conditions in a minor New Source Review (NSR) permit issued by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for the Navajo coal plant in Arizona.

That permit grants SRP conditional approval to construct a refined coal treatment system (RCTS) at the Navajo Generating Station (NGS).

Said the June 16 response: “SRP respectfully requests that the Environmental Appeals Board (‘EAB’ or the ‘Board’) deny review. Petitioner has not properly preserved the issues and arguments raised in this appeal and has not otherwise met his burden of proof. Indeed, Petitioner’s comments in this permitting proceeding amounted to less than one page of conclusory statements to which EPA adequately responded. Further, the arguments Petitioner now seeks to present for the first time in these proceedings lack merit. Petitioner also improperly raises issues over which the Board has no jurisdiction. For all of these reasons, review should be expedited, and the Petition should be dismissed.”

SRP is an owner and the operator of NGS, a coal-fired plant composed of three 750-MW generating units. Petitioner has challenged a permit authorizing SRP to construct an RCTS at that facility. The RCTS would allow SRP to treat the coal used at NGS to reduce emissions of NOx and mercury. SRP sought a permit for the project pursuant to EPA’s Tribal Minor NSR rule because the RCTS project would result in a small increase in particulate matter (PM) emissions. To control this minimal increase, the permit requires the installation and operation of dust collectors and baghouses at key equipment for the RCTS. The permit also imposes controls to mitigate the impacts of the additional truck deliveries that will be needed to supply the RCTS with the cement kiln dust and calcium bromide additives used to refine the coal.

Navajo is co-owned by the following six entities: U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, SRP, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, Arizona Public Service, Nevada Power and Tucson Electric Power. It receives coal with a maximum sulfur content of 1.5% by weight from Peabody Western Coal Co.’s Kayenta Mine.

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.