Skip to main content

In May of last year, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Environment (MDNRE) denied a permit for the Wolverine Power Supply Cooperative, Inc. to build a new coal-fired power plant in Rogers City, Michigan.

Celebrated as a WIN for environmentalists fighting climate-changing greenhouse gas emissions and for those pushing for Michigan to adopt cleaner energy sources, the celebration has now been cut off. Last August, Wolverine Power sued the State over the denial.

The fight against carbon-spewing power plants in Michigan was dealt a blow when, in February, a Circuit Court judge remanded the permit denial back to the DNRE for further consideration. In the ruling the judge said the DNRE (now known as the Department of Environmental Quality, DEQ) failed to base its permit denial on specific air quality concern which it was compelled to do.

DEQ has indicated that it will not appeal the decision so the power plant is now slated to move forward.

"We’re in compliance with the courts at this point; we're not planning to appeal this decision," said DEQ spokesperson Brad Wurfel.

The Department of Environmental quality says they've reviewed the permit application and they're prepared to give the permit to install, which would mean the project could move forward.

"We're waiting to hear back from them and we do plan to work with them as partners," said Wurfel.

In fact, the DEQ says the ball is in Wolverine's court.  In a statement from Wolverine, they said this:

"Wolverine has received the opinion from the Missaukee County Circuit Court regarding the air quality permit for the Wolverine Clean Energy Venture power plant development in Rogers City. Our project team is presently reviewing the opinion and working with MDEQ staff to determine our next steps. Wolverine continues to believe the Rogers City location is a world-class site to construct an electric generating facility."

Today the DEQ announced a public hearing on the impending power plant:

Dear Interested Party,

In accordance with the recent Circuit Court remand, the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has re-evaluated Permit to Install application No. 317-07 for Wolverine Power’s proposed power plant, taking into account new regulations.  Although the application was denied on May 21, 2010, the Court determined that lack of need for the proposed facility was not a legal basis for this denial.

On May 19, 2011, a public hearing on the DEQ’s proposed conditional permit approval will be held at 7:00 p.m. in the Rogers City High School Gymnasium, 1033 West Huron Avenue, Rogers City, Michigan.  The purpose of the hearing will be to take testimony on the record pertaining to the new regulations which include the Best Available Control Technology demonstration for greenhouse gases and the air quality analysis for the new 1-hour National Ambient Air Quality Standards for nitrogen oxides and sulfur dioxide.  Prior to the hearing, an informational session will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. also in the Rogers City High School Gymnasium.  Staff will be available to answer questions.

Information regarding the re-evaluation can be found at Written comments may be sent to Mary Ann Dolehanty, Permit Section Supervisor, DEQ, Air Quality Division, P.O. Box 30260, Lansing, Michigan, 48909-7760, or submitted via the webpage.  If you have any questions, please contact us at 517-335-4607.

G. Vinson Hellwig, Chief, Air Quality Division

Given that Republicans control all parts of the government in Michigan, this appears to be a "done deal" and the hearing is little more than a formality.

I'm  just sayin'...

Cross-posted at

Originally posted to Eclectablog - eclectic blogging for a better tomorrow on Wed Apr 13, 2011 at 09:10 AM PDT.

Also republished by Michigan, My Michigan and Climate Hawks.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site