Share this article

print logo

Hearing set on proposal to convert power plant

A draft environmental impact statement for the proposed Laidlaw Energy Group power plant conversion project will be aired in a public hearing at 7 p.m. Oct. 3 in the Holiday Valley Clubhouse Chalet on Holiday Valley Road.

Laidlaw is a New York City firm seeking town Planning Board approval for a site plan and special-use permit to reopen a former natural gas-burning cogeneration plant at 6662 Route 219 North near Route 242.

Laidlaw also is seeking permission from Niagara Mohawk Power Corp. to boost the plant's generating capacity from 4 megawatts to 7 megawatts. It also wants to convert the plant from a natural gas-powered facility to a wood waste-to-energy plant. The wood-chip fuel would be burned and power wood-drying kilns on the site.

Air emissions for the plant are governed by the state Department of Environmental Conservation, which has given Laidlaw incentive financing -- a $1 million grant -- to develop an alternative energy source.

Questions from community residents and the Planning Board led to revisions in the plans, which now show a 50-foot-high boiler house set 15 feet below ground level in an existing structure and a 70-foot exhaust stack lowered to a height of 52.5 feet. The company now proposes storing a 10-day supply of wood chips inside an existing building on the site instead of piling a 30-day supply outside.

The impact statement also contains project alternatives and is on view from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Ellicottville Town Hall, 1 W. Washington St., and Ellicottville Memorial Library, 1 Washington St.
Deadline for written comments is Oct. 17. Those can be sent to the Planning Board at the Town Hall, P.O. Box 600, Ellicottville, NY 14731.

There are no comments - be the first to comment