Tuesday, October 9, 2007

DHEC Issues Draft Air Permit to Santee Cooper

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) issued a draft air quality permit for the two proposed 660 MW coal plants on the banks on the Great Pee Dee in Florence County yesterday.

The permit is a draft, which means the document has yet to be approved. In fact, they will be open for public comment until Friday, December 7 of this year. You can submit a comment here.

There will also be a public hearing on the draft permit on November 8, 2007 in the gym of Hannah-Pamplico High School in Pamplico, SC. There you can express your opinion in person regarding DHEC's decision to issue a draft permit for this plant.

Perhaps most disappointing, besides DHEC's refusal to delay its issue of the draft air permit until completion of the EIS process at the request of the Southern Environmental Law Center and the United States Department of Interior, among other concerned groups, is its decision not to require Santee Cooper use the best technology available to limit the pollution from its coal plant. DHEC did not require that Santee Cooper construct an IGCC unit, which is the cleanest coal burning technology available today -- instead DHEC, in its draft permit, has assented to Santee Cooper using one of the least technologically advanced and most dirty of the available coal combustion technologies.

DHEC's press release from Tuesday:

Please be advised that the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC), Bureau of Air Quality, has drafted a Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) air quality construction permit and Preliminary Determination for the proposed Santee Cooper Pee Dee power plant near Kingsburg, South Carolina. These documents have not yet been approved and are open to comment.

DHEC will hold a public hearing to allow interested persons the opportunity to express concerns and provide comments regarding the proposed plant and the air quality documents that have been drafted. A copy of Public Notice #07-095-PSD-N-H announcing the public hearing and 60-day public comment period is attached. This notice has been published in the Florence Morning News, The Sun News, and The State newspapers on Tuesday, October 9, 2007, and may also be viewed on DHEC’s website at any time during the public comment period. The 60-day public comment period begins today, October 9, 2007, and will officially close on Friday, December 7, 2007. In an effort to provide the public with convenient access to the draft and preliminary documents, the permit application, and other relevant correspondence, this information has been posted on DHEC’s website and can be viewed at: http://www.scdhec.gov/environment/baq/SanteeCooper.aspx. The attached public notice provides instructions for reviewing and/or obtaining hard copies of these documents and how to submit written comments.

The public hearing will begin at 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 8, 2007, in the gymnasium of Hannah-Pamplico High School in Pamplico, South Carolina. Please see the attached map or call the school at (843) 493-5781 for directions.

We would like to thank you for your comments and interest in this proposed project. Please bring this notice and public hearing to the attention of others you know who may be interested in Santee Cooper’s proposed Pee Dee Generating Station.


Anonymous said...

Is that woman in the cartoon pregnant or just full of fish?

Rusty said...

That's a very sensitive comment there , assuming you are referring to the graphic showing how humans are contaminated w/ mercury from coal plants. Let's hope she isn't pregnant so that, in addition to her own, her unborn child's health isn't permanently compromised by mercury poisoning.

Kiersten said...

Good for people to know.