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Cuomo’s Power Plant Power Play Blasted

PHOTO: The Dunkirk Power Plant (upper left) will be repowered and three of its units converted from coal burning to natural gas. Critics say that decision by Governor Cuomo is a setback for New York's green-energy movement. Photo credit: Wikipedia.
PHOTO: The Dunkirk Power Plant (upper left) will be repowered and three of its units converted from coal burning to natural gas. Critics say that decision by Governor Cuomo is a setback for New York's green-energy movement. Photo credit: Wikipedia.

December 17, 2013

DUNKIRK, N.Y. – The NRG Power Plant in Dunkirk, on the shores of Lake Erie, will not be shut down as planned, but will be repowered and converted to burning natural gas, with some coal-burning continued.

Many environmentalists are not pleased with the plan announced Sunday by Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Chris Amato, representing three groups opposing it, says the transmission utility National Grid had recommended simply upgrading power lines, something that squares with the state's own energy highway blueprint.

"And it would have been much cheaper – orders of magnitude less expensive than converting this dinosaur of a plant to natural gas," he explains.

The governor said the agreement would result in a larger, cleaner power plant that reduces consumers' costs, creates jobs and stabilizes the local property tax base.

Amato says it's remarkable that Cuomo announced this while a period of public comment on the matter was still under way.

"So the governor has completely short-circuited the public process that's been set up to protect the public interest on these types of decisions and has just decided it for everybody," he says.

Amato calls Cuomo the Grinch who stole New York's green energy future.

"What they're going to do is, in essence, saddle the people of New York with the cost of basically building a new power plant where none is needed, and powering it with natural gas, which is an emitter of greenhouse gases," he says.



Mark Scheerer, Public News Service - NY