Mirant Bowline, LLC (Second Rescheduled)
January 23, 2006
DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION
SECOND RESCHEDULED LEGISLATIVE PUBLIC HEARING AND ISSUES CONFERENCE
Applicant: Mirant Bowline, LLC, 140 Sampsondale Ave, W. Haverstraw, NY
Application Number: DEC Number: 3-3922-00003/00003; SPDES Number: NY 000 8010
Project Description: The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation ("Department") proposes to renew and modify the State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System ("SPDES") Permit of the Bowline Generating Station, Units 1 & 2 ("Bowline"). Bowline is located on a small embayment of the Hudson River called Bowline Pond in the Town of Haverstraw. The draft modified permit requires that pursuant to 6 NYCRR Part 704.5 and Section 316(b) of the Clean Water Act the permittee, Mirant Bowline, LLC ("Mirant") reduce entrainment and impingement impacts to aquatic organisms of the Hudson River from the operation of Bowline's once-through cooling water withdrawal system. Reductions are to be accomplished through:
· Current restricted flow operation with coarse mesh barrier net;
· Addition of variable speed drivers or pumps to existing circulating water pumps; and
· Seasonal deployment of fine mesh barrier net or comparable alternative technologies/operational measures.
The permit requires Mirant to reduce impacts from entrainment by 80% during the fifth year of this permit. Mirant must reduce impacts from impingement by 95% during the third year of this permit and all subsequent years of this permit.
Technology and water quality assessments completed for the facility demonstrated that other than the thermal limit, the existing permit limits are adequate and met existing water quality standards. To address the thermal issue the Department will require Mirant to conduct a thermal study to demonstrate Part 316(a) compliance with 6 NYCRR Part 704.2. The permit provides time lines for completion of a protocol and the thermal study.
State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (SPDES)
SPDES Permits: Pursuant to ECL §17-0823, Mirant filed an application to renew the existing SPDES permit in April 3, 1992. The permit was extended under the provisions of the State Administrative Procedures Act. In February, 2003 through a Request for Information(RFI), (dated February 3, 2003, revised April 16, 2003), the Department initiated a modification of the previously filed renewal application for the SPDES permit. Mirant responded to the Department's requests in November 2003. Since that time the Department sent three additional RFIs, to which Mirant submitted responses. All RFIs and responses are available for review at the locations indicated below.
Additional Regulatory Provisions
NYS Environmental Conservation Law and implementing regulations: In addition to the specific statutes and regulations cited above, the subject SPDES permit application is being processed by Department Staff pursuant to ECL Article 3, Title 3 (General Functions), ECL Article 17 (Water Pollution Control), and Title 6 of the New York Code of Rules and Regulations (6NYCRR) Part 621 (Uniform Procedures), Part 624 (Permit Hearing Procedures), and Parts 750 et seq. (State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System).
Part 621 (Uniform Procedures): The Department issued a Notice of Complete Application dated February 28, 2000 that was published in the Department's Environmental Notice Bulletin on March 8, 2000 and in the Journal News on March 13, 2000. A draft permit was not made available at the time of the notice.
SEQRA Status: Department staff has determined that the proposal is a Type I action as designated by 6 NYCRR Part 617. A coordinated review was conducted and the Department, as lead agency, has determined that the project may have a significant adverse impact on the environment.
A Draft Environmental Impact Statement ("DEIS") was prepared that incorporated three facilities, Roseton Electric Generating Facility Units 1 and 2, Indian Point Electric Generating Facility Units 2 and 3, and Bowline Point Electric Generating Facility Units 1 and 2, in the review. This was collectively known as the Hudson River Settlement Agreement ("HRSA"). The DEIS for these three facilities was considered adequate for public review on February 28, 2000. The project was re-noticed on May 3, 2000 when the Department extended the comment period and noticed a public hearing that was held on June 8, 2000. The Department prepared a Final Environmental Impact Statement ("FEIS") in which the public comments were addressed. The FEIS was accepted by the Department on June 25, 2003.
Roseton and Indian Point were re-noticed to accept public comments on the draft permits on April 12, 2005 and November 12, 2003, respectively. The draft SPDES permit for the Bowline is the last of these facilities to be noticed.
State Historic Preservation Act ("SHPA") Determination: The proposed activity is not subject to review in accordance with SHPA. The permit type is exempt or the activity is being reviewed in accordance with federal historic preservation regulations.
Coastal Management: This project is located in a Coastal Management area and is subject to the Waterfront Revitalization and Coastal Resources Act.
Tentative NYSDEC Staff Position and Document Availability: Department staff has reviewed information submitted by the applicant and information in numerous reports and studies conducted over more than 25 years related to entrainment and impingement at once-through cooling facilities. Department staff has also reviewed Mirant's application materials and responses to the Department's RFIs, and has determined that they are complete pursuant to 6 NYCRR Part 621. A tentative determination has been made to approve this application and a draft permit has been prepared. The background documentation supporting this determination is available in the "fact sheets" and the administrative record for the project.
The application materials, RFIs, Responses to RFIs, fact sheet, and the draft SPDES permit are available for review at the following locations during normal business hours:
1) NYSDEC Office of Hearings and Mediation Services, 625 Broadway, First Floor, Albany, NY 12233-1550. Contact: Administrative Law Judge Molly T. McBride at (518) 402-9003
2) NYSDEC Division of Environmental Permits, 625 Broadway, Albany, New York 12233-1750. Contact: Kevin Kispert, Project Manager, at (518) 402-9161;
3) NYSDEC Region 3 Office, 21 South Putt Corners Road, New Paltz, NY 12561, Contact: Mike Merriman or Margaret Duke at (845) 256-3054;
4) Haverstraw Library, Thiells Branch (1), 10 West Ramapo Road, Garnerville, New York 10923. Contact: Donna Sopalsky, Assistant Director, at (845) 786-3800; and
5) Village of Haverstraw Village Hall, 40 New Main Street, Haverstraw, NY 10927, Contact: Emma Velez, (845) 429-0300 x13.
Written Comments: All written comments about the draft SPDES permit must be postmarked by March 15, 2006, and sent to Administrative Law Judge Molly McBride, NYSDEC Office of Hearings and Mediation Services, 625 Broadway, First Floor, Albany, New York 12233-1550.
Legislative Public Hearings Sessions and Issues Conference
Legislative Public Hearing: Legislative hearing sessions to receive unsworn statements from the public on the application and the draft permit, described above, will be held at 2:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. on March 29, 2006 at the Haverstraw Town Hall, 1 Rosman Road, Haverstraw, New York, 10927. (Contact: Ms. Sherry Stila, (845) 429-2200.) The legislative hearing previously scheduled for January 31st and February 14, 2006 is rescheduled for March 29, 2006, no hearing will be held on January 31st or February 14, 2006. All persons, organizations, corporations, or government agencies that may be affected by the proposed project are invited to attend the hearing and to submit oral or written comments. It is not necessary to file in advance to speak at the legislative hearing. Lengthy statements should be in writing and summarized for oral presentation. Reasonable time limits may be set for each speaker to afford everyone an opportunity to be heard. Equal weight will be given to both oral and written statements. The hearing location is fully accessible to persons with a mobility impairment pursuant to the State Administrative Procedures Act and interpreter services shall be made available to deaf persons at no charge upon written request to the Administrative Law Judge, identified above, at least 10 days prior to the hearing.
Issues Conference: A pre-adjudicatory hearing issues conference is scheduled to be held at 9:00 a.m. on March 30, 2006 at the Haverstraw Town Hall, 1 Rosman Road, Haverstraw, New York, 10927. The issues conference scheduled for February 1st and February 15, 2006 is rescheduled for March 30, 2006, no issues conference will be held on February 1 st or February 15, 2006. The issues conference will continue day to day, as necessary. The purpose of the issues conference is to define, narrow, and, if possible, resolve proposed adjudicable issues concerning the renewal application. It is important that any persons requesting party status appear or be represented at the issues conference in order that all proposed issues may be fully discussed. If an adjudicatory hearing is necessary, it will be scheduled to occur at a later date.
Filing for Party Status and Proposed Issues: Persons seeking to participate in the issues conference and any subsequent adjudicatory hearing must file a petition (a written statement) explaining whether their request is for full party status or amicus status. For the required contents of petitions for full party status, see 6 NYCRR 624.5(b)(1) and (2). To determine whether an issue is substantive, see 6 NYCRR 624.4(c)(2) and to determine whether an issue is significant, see 6 NYCRR 624.4(c)(3). For the required contents of a petition seeking amicus status, see 6 NYCRR 624.5(b)(1) and (3).
All petitions must be received by 4:00 p.m. on March 15, 2006. One copy of any petition requesting either full party status or amicus status must be served upon each of the following individuals:
(1) Administrative Law Judge Molly McBride, NYSDEC Office of Hearings and Mediation Services, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-1550.
(2) Mark Sanza, Esq., Associate Counsel, Office of General Counsel, NYSDEC 625 Broadway, Albany, New York 12233-1500.
(3) Philip Goldstein, Esq., McGuireWoods, LLP, counsel for applicant, 1345 Avenue of the Americas, Seventh Floor, New York, NY 10105-0106.
(4) Kristy Bulleit, Esq., counsel for applicant, Hunton and Williams, 1900 K Street, Suite 1200, Washington, D.C., 20006.
In the event no petitions for party status are filed, the issues conference may be canceled.
Service by electronic mail or facsimile is not authorized.
Chief Administrative Law Judge
Dated: January 23, 2006
Albany, New York