Two groups appeal Indiana’s permit for coal-to-diesel plant

Two southern Indiana groups are appealing an air permit that state regulators recently approved for a planned $2.5 billion coal-to-diesel plant.

The environmental law firm Earthjustice prepared the appeal on behalf of Southwestern Indiana Citizens for Quality of Life and Valley Watch.

The groups say they’re concerned about potentially “dangerous air pollution” being released by Riverview Energy’s planned project in Dale , about 40 miles  northeast of Evansville.

The Jasper Herald reported that the appeal asks Indiana’s Office of Environmental Adjudication to vacate the permit, which the Indiana Department of Environmental Management approved on June 11.

The plant would convert coal into diesel fuel and Naphtha. It’s expected to release about 2.2 million tons of carbon dioxide, 225 tons of carbon monoxide and 120 tons of sulfur dioxide annually.

The Indiana Department of Environmental Management released an air-quality analysis in late October for the proposed plant, which would convert the coal  through a process called direct coal hydrogenation. State environmental officials said the facility wouldn’t significantly contribute to pollution and poses very little cancer risk, the Evansville Courier & Press reported.

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