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EPA finalizes clean air plan for Four Corners Power Plant


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency yesterday finalized a clean air plan that regulates emissions for the Four Corners Power Plant located on the Navajo Nation near Farmington, New Mex.

The plan contains federal emission limits for sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, total particulate matter, opacity, and dust control requirements.

The plan includes significant sulfur dioxide reductions from the facility’s historic highs at the 5-unit 2,040 megawatt Four Corners plant, which began operations in 1962. The reductions are the result of a partnership between the Navajo Nation, the Arizona Public Service, the National Park Service, Environmental Defense, Western Resource Advocates, and New Mexico Citizens for Clean Air and Water.

“This action demonstrates how collaboration can lead to significant environmental benefits,” said Deborah Jordan, the EPA’s Air Division director for the Pacific Southwest region. “Since the Four Corners plant will be emitting over 20,000 tons less sulfur dioxide per year than in the recent past, this action ensures that citizens in the Four Corners area will have cleaner air to breathe, and that visibility will be improved.”

The EPA proposed a federal plan for Four Corners in 1999, but held off on finalizing the plan until negotiations on sulfur dioxide reductions for Four Corners were complete. Negotiations and the testing period successfully concluded in 2005, and the EPA proposed a new federal plan on September 12 that included the agreed upon sulfur dioxide reductions.

On July 26, the Sierra Club filed a complaint in U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico requesting that the EPA take final action on a federal plan. Consistent with a December proposed consent decree, the EPA finalized its 2006 proposed federal plan.

Additional information on the plan is available on the EPA’s Web site at:

This action is not related to the air quality permit for the proposed Desert Rock power plant. The EPA is currently evaluating public comments on the proposed Desert Rock permit. Information about the proposed permit can be viewed online at


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