Environmental groups appeal air permit for planned gas-fired power plant

FORWARD TOWNSHIP, Pa. — Local environmental organizations have filed an appeal of the Allegheny County Health Department’s granting of an air-quality permit for a planned gas-fired power plant in Forward Township.

Invenergy, a global energy company, wants to build a 639-megawatt combined-cycle natural-gas powered generating station in Forward Township. It filed an air permit with ACHD, which had a public hearing on the project earlier this year. The permit was granted Oct. 5 and is now opposed in the appeal Thursday by the Mountain Watershed Association, the Environmental Integrity Project, Clean Air Council and PennFuture.

The appeal files 10 objections to the permit, including claims by the groups that there aren’t enough monitoring and testing requirements to verify emissions or enforce limits that are set out in the permit. It also claims AHCD didn’t conduct an additional impact analysis even though the plant in Forward Township is near environmental justice communities across the river. The appeal said there is an “erroneous and unreasonable ammonia split emissions limit” that is twice as high as permits at larger plants. It said that if the plant was to be built, then the permit would allow too much pollution in an area that already has bad air.

Read more in the Pittsburgh Business Times.