A Superior Court Judge in Fulton County, Georgia has ruled that construction of Dynegy’s Longleaf plant be halted until it is assured the plant will limit the amount of carbon dioxide it releases.
The original permit would have allowed the plant to emit 9 million tons of carbon dioxide annually, something the court said was unreasonable.
The court cited the Supreme Court’s 2007 ruling recognizing that carbon dioxide is a pollutant under the federal Clean Air Act. It’s the first time any court has applied the ruling to an industrial source.
Commenting on the ruling, Bruce Nilles, director of the Sierra Club’s National Coal Campaign said:
“Coal-fired power plants emit more than 30% of our nation’s global warming pollution. Thanks to this decision, coal plants across the country will be forced to live up to their clean coal rhetoric.”
Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius rejected construction of a new coal plant in that state, saying global warming is a public health threat.
It isn’t known yet whether Dynegy, the largest coal plant developer in the country, will fight the ruling. Dynegy has more new coal plants planned in the country than any other developer.
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