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Wednesday, March 2, 2011 - 12:01pm

Coal Plant Gets New Permits

Georgia environmental officials have issued final water permits for a coal-fired power plant in Washington County. This comes after environmental groups challenged the plant in court.

In July environmental groups convinced a judge to reject the initial water permits issued by the Georgia Environmental Protection Division. The court ruled EPD failed to follow proper procedures for giving the plants developers, Power4Georgians permission to take water out of the Oconee River and put it back in the Ogeechee River.

Dean Alford with the Power4Georgians is trying to build the plant. He says with new permits issued he’s hoping to move forward with construction soon.

“There was an issue about where we were monitoring the water on the return water from the cooling towers to the streams and we also dealt with the issue of making sure that in the advertisement for the public hearing that people were aware that this was an interbasin transfer.”

Alford says they’re also working to correct problems with their air permit. Opponents of the plant could appeal again.