McKEON CONCERNED WITH EMISSIONS FROM PA COAL PLANT, EAGER TO TESTIFY AT UPCOMING EPA HEARINGS

Concerned with the impact on North Jersey residents, Assembly Environment Committee Chair John F. McKeon today praised the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for deciding to hold hearings to study pollutants being emitted from a coal-fired power plant across the Delaware River in Pennsylvania.

McKeon noted that GenOn Energy in Portland, PA emitted 30,000 tons of sulfur dioxide last year, almost three times the amount of all seven of New Jersey’s coal plants combined. In light of this, he also praised the state Department of Environmental Protection for taking a tough stance on the issue to protect the health of residents, particularly considering New Jersey’s stringent emission requirements.”I am extremely pleased that the EPA is taking a proactive approach to this issue and not turning a blind eye. New Jersey has long been a leader in modernizing our power plants and taking steps to curb harmful emissions.

“It is patently unfair for energy companies in other states to skirt federal environmental laws. The lack of vigilance in other states is to the detriment of the health of New Jersey’s densely populated communities that are downwind from these harmful emissions.

“Our DEP has conclusive evidence of spikes in sulfur dioxide when winds blow from the west where GenOn Energy’s coal plant is located. Given all that we have done to reduce these pollutants, I am looking forward to the EPA’s hearings and the possibility of testifying on the matter,” said McKeon (D-Essex).

McKeon has sponsored numerous measures to curb harmful emissions, including a constitutional amendment that allocated a portion of the Corporate Business Tax to retrofit school buses and public transit buses to curb emissions.