A letter from the Environmental Protection Agency agreed with what an environmental group’s attorney said at a Curtis Bay meeting recently about a proposed trash-burning power plant in south Baltimore:
Maryland was wrong to set licensing conditions that would allow the plant to burn old tires and junked car parts, as well as municipal trash, according to the June 28th letter from the EPA to the Maryland Department of the Environment.
The letter, obtained by Kimberly Wilson of the D.C.,-based Environmental Integrity Project, “disagrees” with the conclusion that waste of this kind may be burned by a “municipal solid waste combustor.”
The letter was referring to the proposal by N.Y.-baserd Energy Answers International to build a trash-burning power plant on the site of an old agricultiral chemical building in Fairfield.
Without changing the kind of fuel to be burned at the facility, it would have to be permitted as “a commercial or industrial solid waste incinerator,” wrote Kathleen Anderson, associate director of EPA’s office of permits and air toxics. Wilson said that designation carries with it stricter emissions and requirements and other criteria.
Re-applying under a different designation would mean the kind of delay the company has been resisting, as they scramble to take advantage of time-sensitive stimulus funds.
Anderson said in the letter that the document (produced by the Maryland Public Service Commission in conjunction with MDE) that she reviewed “does not meet the criteria for a federally enforceable permit.”
“That’s pretty much them agreeing with what I said in that meeting the other day,” said Wilson, an attorney whose group has sought to intervene in the case.