The controversy over New Mexico's proposed Desert Rock coal-fired power plant continues. On July 31, EPA Region IX approved a Clean Air Act permit for the plant, mooting a pending lawsuit against EPA by the project's proponents. Now a group of environmental NGOs, who had previously moved to intervene in the lawsuit, have petitioned EPA's Environmental Appeals Board to reverse the permitting decision.
The petition, filed by Dine Care, Environmental Defense Fund, Grand Canyon Trust, Natural Resources Defense Council, San Juan Citizens Alliance, Sierra Club and WildEarth Guardians, contends that the permitting decision involved “numerous significant substantive and procedural errors,” including failing to incorporate carbon dioxide emissions limits in the permit. The petition also alleges that the EPA sidestepped part of the normal review process under pressure from lobbyists.