PacifiCorp critical of litigation by Greenie groups
February 21, 2007
(Salt Lake City, Utah) - PacifiCorp Energy announced today that the Sierra Club and Wyoming Outdoor Council filed suit against the company alleging opacity violations from 2001 to 2006 at PacifiCorp’s Jim Bridger power plant near Rock Springs, Wyoming.
“It is unfortunate that the Sierra Club and Wyoming Outdoor Council have filed a lawsuit despite the commitment we made in 2006 and the ongoing implementation of our plan to invest more than $1 billion in pollution control equipment,” said Bill Fehrman, president of PacifiCorp Energy. “These scheduled improvements will significantly reduce emissions from Bridger and other PacifiCorp facilities and result in air quality improvements in the Intermountain West. Prior to the Sierra Club and Wyoming Outdoor Council notice, PacifiCorp agreed to install millions of dollars in pollution controls at the Jim Bridger plant. We hope this lawsuit does not delay those pollution control projects.
“PacifiCorp has always consistently and fully reported its environmental performance to the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality in a timely manner,” Fehrman said, “and this information has been available to the public in the form of quarterly excess emissions reports.”
In November 2006, Sierra Club and the Wyoming Outdoor Council served notice to the utility that they intended to sue for alleged violations of the federal Clean Air Act. Sierra Club and the Wyoming Outdoor Council did in fact file that suit Feb. 21, despite their awareness that the company has already committed to over $1 billion in improvements that will significantly reduce emissions.
As Fehrman noted, “We believe our resources are better invested in improving air quality than in defending a lawsuit, particularly because that suit has no merit and does not involve a risk to the health and welfare of the citizens of Wyoming. It is difficult to understand the motivation of the Sierra Club and Wyoming Outdoor Council when the planned projects will address the environmental concerns expressed by the plaintiffs.”
Through Pacific Power and Rocky Mountain Power, PacifiCorp Energy operates the utility’s electric generation system that supplies 1.7 million customers in Wyoming, Utah, Idaho, Oregon, Washington and California.