Lithonia Residents Adamant About Keeping Biomass Plant Out

The Georgia Environmental Protection Division held a public meeting and hearing on the controversial proposed plant, slated for an area in unincorporated Lithonia.

The people who asked questions and comments Tuesday at the Lou Walker Senior Center about the proposed biomass gasification plant made things crystal clear: they still don't want it.

Click on the attached video to see some of the comments at Tuesday's meeting.

About 100 people attended the gathering, which began with a presentation about the plant by Eric Cornwell, permitting program manager with the Georgia Environmental Protection Division, followed by a question and answer period in which people still made comments. The public hearing portion was last.

Green Energy Partners, which has applied for an air quality permit, wants to build a 11.5 megawatt electric generating facility that would be located at 1770 Roger Lake Road in unincorporated Lithonia. It would have two biomass boilers. Biomass refers to wood, which EPD explained would come from forestry residue, yard limbs, clean used lumber -- nothing treated or painted.

Some people in the audience took issue with that, fearing that once the ink dried on the deal there wouldn't be as much attention paid to whether the materials were actually "clean."

Concerned about everything from pollution to truck traffic in the residential area near the proposed plant; to the effect of the particulates on asthmatics, the elderly and children; to what would happen in the event of an emergency at the plant, residents said they would continue to fight the project.

Green Energy Partners' president and CEO Neville Anderson attended the meeting but did not address the questions or comments.

According to an article in Crossroads News, the plant has been approved for property tax incentives by the DeKalb Development Authority.

Until Dec. 26, EPD will receive comments on the Green Energy air quality permit appliction and draft permit. E-mail comments to: eric.cornwell@gadnr.org

Mail comments to:

Eric Cornwell, stationary source permitting program manager

Air Protection Branch

Environmental Protection Division

4424 International Parkway, Suite 120

Atlanta, GA 30354

See also: Edler on Proposed Biomass Plant: 'I don't want any exposure that I don't have to have'

A December 19, 2012 at 05:11 PM
Why don't they put their plant in Alpharetta??? It amazes me how they always want to put plants, factories, dollar stores, and the likes in our neighborhoods. Do they think we do not deserve anything better? I am sick of it
Leslie Johnson December 19, 2012 at 05:35 PM
A, that was the sentiment at last night's meeting, too.
Bruce Mitchell December 20, 2012 at 02:40 AM
Normally a municipality will offer tax incentives to entice desirable businesses to locate within it's jurisdiction. Businesses that might otherwise not come without that incentive. Further, the businesses that are desired invariably will bring assets: many jobs, skilled labor and a general elevation of the quality of life. Why is the county of Dekalb offering a tax incentive when this business obviously already wants to locate there? Is Dekalb that desperate and inept at governance that they would make a deal like that? A deal that if anything will only ensure that more businesses that are not desirable will populate that area? Casual observance supports the plausibility that the incentive is being placed by an unseen hand into an unseen pocket. Time will tell. Let's hope that memories won't be short.
Rita Lucious December 20, 2012 at 01:26 PM
I don't want a bio any kind of plant near my home in Lithonia, I grew up around plants in Alabama and have a long history of allergy related issues because of the fumes we inhaled for years. They need to take this company to another area of town, preferrably Buckhead, or somewhere in Buford, please don't bring that disease causing plant to our home of Lithonia!!!


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