Energy department holds hearing on power plant - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Energy department holds hearing on power plant

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NORTH BEAVER TOWNSHIP, Pa. - People for and against a power plant slated to be built in the township spoke out Wednesday night at a hearing with Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection.

While some see it as much needed economic development, others fear the possible effects on the environment.

About 60 people attended the hearing at the local fire department.

The DEP is considering an application from L.S. Power to build Hickory Run Energy Plant, which would be located off Edinburg Road not far from Mohawk Schools.

The township supervisor, Jerry Tillin, says he and local leaders have done their due diligence on the proposal.

"Everything that they're doing is truly a benefit," Tillin says. "They are considering extending our main sewer lines throughout the township and adding water lines to our township."

Hickory Run Energy would run on natural gas to produce electricity.

Resident Carrie Hahn thinks there should be better ways to run a power plant than combustion generators.

"I'm concerned about the air quality and water; the power plant is just a Band-Aid for a problem we have and that is this dependence on fossil fuel," Hahn says. "We have got to get away from it. It's a finite resource, it's going away."

Hahn and other organic farmers fear the plant will be another addition to the gas drilling industry that will contaminate their lands.

Not far from the township, two cryogenic plants are in the works.

The Hickory Run plant's project manager, Casey Carroll, says the company is taking measures to protect the environment.

"We're planning to use pipeline quality natural gas in a combined cycle process," Carroll says. "We've committed, from the outset, to using the best available in technologies, basically all commercially viable technologies, to control our emissions."

Citizens have until April 15 to send their comments to the DEP.

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