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E-M:/ Enviros lose on Hillman Power appeal

Enviro-Mich message from "Alex J. Sagady & Associates" <ajs@sagady.com>

[Federal Register: April 25, 2003 (Volume 68, Number 80)]
[Page 20385-20386]
 From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]


[MI81-01-7290; FRL-7488-2]

Notice of a Final Determination for the Hillman Power Company, Hillman, MI

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
ACTION: Notice of final action.


SUMMARY: This notice announces that, on July 31, 2002, the
Environmental Appeals Board (EAB) of the United States Environmental
Protection Agency dismissed petitions for review of a Prevention of
Significant Deterioration (PSD) permit issued under the Clean Air Act
to Hillman Power Company, Hillman, Montmorency County, Michigan. The
Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) issued the PSD

DATES: The effective date for the decision is July 31, 2002. Judicial
review of this permit decision, to the extent it is available pursuant
to section 307(b)(1) of the Clean Air Act, may be sought by filing a
petition for review in the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth
Circuit within 60 days of today's date.

ADDRESSES: Documents relevant to the above action are available for
public inspection during normal business hours at the following
address: Environmental Protection Agency, Region 5, 77 West Jackson
Boulevard (AR-18J), Chicago, Illinois 60604. To arrange inspection of
these documents, call Laura L. David at (312) 886-0661.

Protection Agency, Region 5, 77 W. Jackson Boulevard (AR-18J), Chicago,
Illinois 60604. The EAB decision is available at: <A 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Hillman Power owns and operates a tire-
derived fuel (TDF) and wood-fired boiler that produces steam for
generating electricity which is sold on the electrical grid system. The
existing power plant is located in the City of Hillman, Montmorency
County, Michigan. The boiler is capable of burning fuels at a rated
capacity of 300 million BTU per hour heat input. The net capacity of
the power plant is approximately 18 megawatts. The plant was allowed to
use wood and up to 3,149 pounds per hour TDF (approximately 6% of total
fuel) as fuel.
     MDEQ received the permit application from Hillman Power on
September 27, 2001, seeking an increase in the use of TDF to be fired
as a supplementary fuel for up to 5,000 pounds per hour (approximately
9% of total fuel). The application was subject to federal Prevention of
the Significant Deterioration (PSD) review for sulfur dioxide
(SO<SUB>2</SUB>). In addition to the permit requirements (which include
using the Best Available Control Technology (BACT)), the company agreed
to make environmentally beneficial physical changes to its facility,
including installation of a new stack, new air heater tube banks, and a
new voltage regulator and excitation system. A spare transformer for
the electrostatic precipitator used to control particulate matter (PM)
emissions is available on-site, if any replacement is needed. Also,
significant improvements to operational procedures and work practices
related to boiler cleaning and start-up/shutdown conditions have been
implemented to reduce emissions.
     Pursuant to a delegation agreement between EPA and MDEQ, MDEQ is
authorized to make PSD permitting decisions for new and modified
stationary sources of air pollution in the State of Michigan. On March
13, 2002, the MDEQ issued Permit No. 687-86G to Hillman Power Company.
Because MDEQ acts as EPA's delegatee under the PSD program, MDEQ's
permits are considered EPA-issued permits, and appeals of MDEQ's PSD
permit decisions are reviewed by the EAB pursuant to 40 CFR 124.19.
     On April 16, 2002, the Michigan Environmental Council (MEC), Dr.
Richard N. Olree, Jr., and Ms. Donna Baranyai filed petitions with the
EAB for review of Hillman Power Company's modified PSD permit. The
stated grounds for appeal were: failure to quantify the dioxin
emissions; failure to determine whether dioxin would be adequately
controlled; inappropriate BACT analysis; failure to address heavy metal
fallout data; unjustifiable percentage of increased sulfur dioxide
emissions as compared to tons of TDF burned; failure to consider data
indicating the presence of heavy metals in fly ash in a local
elementary school's

[[Page 20386]]

air filters and playground soils; and failure to consider the
facility's possible failure to comply with a permit provision
prohibiting emissions causing a public nuisance.
     The EAB found that the petitioners made no showing of clear error,
the existence of an important policy matter or an abuse of discretion
warranting review and denied review.

     Dated: April 3, 2003.
Bharat Mathur,
Acting Regional Administrator, Region 5.
[FR Doc. 03-10272 Filed 4-24-03; 8:45 am]

Alex J. Sagady & Associates        http://www.sagady.com

Environmental Enforcement, Permit/Technical Review, Public Policy,
Evidence Review and Litigation Investigation on Air, Water and
Waste/Community Environmental and Resource Protection
Prospectus at:  http://www.sagady.com/sagady.pdf

PO Box 39,  East Lansing, MI  48826-0039
(517) 332-6971; (517) 332-8987 (fax); ajs@sagady.com

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