In The Media

Cayuga Power Plant Operator Tells Lansing Town Board that Plant Will Close

May 16, 2019

Contacts: Lisa Marshall,
Sandra Steingraber,
Link to the memo: Click Here to see the memo
Link to video of 5/15/19 Lansing Town Board meeting:

Statement from Irene Weiser on behalf of No Fracked Gas Cayuga in response to information shared yesterday from Cayuga Power Plant on proposed plant closure:

Last night, at the Lansing, New York town board meeting, Town of Lansing supervisor Ed LaVigne and Tompkins County Legislator Mike Sigler (Lansing) distributed a memo from Cayuga Power Plant manager Jerry Goodenough.

According to this memo and the overview Lavigne and Sigler provided during the meeting, the plant intends to shut down and repurpose as a data center.

In response, Irene Weiser, co-founder of the No Fracked Gas Cayuga campaign and coordinator of Fossil Free Tompkins, said, “The proposed plan to close the coal-fired Cayuga Power Plant and convert it into a data center rather than keep it burning with fracked gas is good news for the Town of Lansing, good news for Tompkins County, and good news for the planet. How fitting to replace this relic of the last century’s dirty fossil-fuel era with today’s modern technology, powered by clean renewable energy.

We thank Governor Cuomo and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation for keeping their promise to close coal plants by 2020 and for providing transition support to the community and the workers.

We urge the New York Power Authority to provide the renewable energy that this data center seeks as long as it commits never to burn fossil fuels again. No Fracked Gas Cayuga will continue to monitor these plans closely to ensure the plant is decommissioned and the site remediated.”

Background on Cayuga Power Plant: From January 2013 to July 2017, NYSEG customers paid over $180 million in subsidies to keep this uneconomic coal-fired power plant operating. In 2016, a fire in the stack of Generating Unit 2 rendered its emissions controls inoperable. In summer of 2016, the plant discharged mercury into Cayuga Lake at levels exceeding discharge limits by 2000 percent without notifying the public. In 2017, the plant emitted asthma-causing sulfur dioxide into the air at rates that exceeded New York State limits. In July 2018, the plant was forced to shut down Generating Unit 2 because it could not comply with State emission standards. Also in 2018, the Plant’s owners filed a petition to convert the beleaguered plant to burn fracked gas, that would be hauled to the plant by up to 60 trucks per day. In November 2018, the Tompkins County Legislature voted (12-2) to oppose the conversion of the plant to burn gas.

Background on No Fracked Gas Cayuga: No Fracked Gas Cayuga is a grassroots citizen campaign that advocates for closing and decommissioning the obsolete, dangerous, polluting Cayuga Power Plant in Lansing, New York, one of only two remaining coal-burning power plants in New York State.

No Fracked Gas Cayuga opposes plans to convert the plant to burn fracked gas carried to Lansing from Pennsylvania by a convoy of trucks.

Our mission and campaign partners:

Sandra Steingraber at the State Of The State

February 11, 2019

by Steve Pierce

“The fracked gas would be trucked in from Pennsylvania, causing misery and harm to our brothers and sisters in across our southern border but also filling our rural roads with compressed natural gas, putting at risk our farmers, our children…”

No Fracked Gas Cayuga’s Sandra Steingraber spoke to WOOC 105.3 FM about New York’s necessary transition off fossil fuels, the campaign to stop the Cayuga Power Plant from burning gas, and the appropriate, alternate vision. Listen here

Could New York Go Carbon Free by 2050?

December 12, 2018

by Susan Arbetter

“Two nights before Thanksgiving, over 100 Tompkins County residents, some toting frozen turkeys they’d just purchased for the holiday, packed a hearing room in downtown Ithaca. A resolution was on the county legislature’s agenda that opposed repowering a coal-burning power plant.”  Dr. Sandra’s Steingraber’s remarks, representing No Fracked Gas Cayuga, frame this piece in City & State New York. Read the article

Sandra Steingraber on Fracked Gas Plant Opposition Update

December 3, 2018

by Tim Williams

“What united everyone … was a sense that this is the moment now to NOT let the fossil fuel party continue by allowing this old Eisenhower-era coal burning power plant to make a lateral move to burned fracked gas hauled in from Pennsylvania … and instead shut this down and move toward renewables.” No Fracked Gas’s Sandra Steingraber speaks on WCNY’s Capitol Pressroom. Listen here

Legislature Opposes Power Plant Repowering

November 30, 2018

by Marcia E. Lynch

“After listening to two hours of public comment and engaging in close to another hour-and-a-half of thoughtful discussion, the Tompkins County Legislature went on record against the Cayuga Operating Company’s current proposal to repower the Lansing coal-fired plant.” The Lansing Star covers the Legislature’s 12-2 passage of the resolution opposing the conversion of the Cayuga Power Plant to using gas. Read the article

Tompkins County Legislature Opposes Power Plant Conversion To Natural Gas

November 21, 2018

by Celia Clarke

“Over a hundred people filled the legislative chamber and about 50 spoke during a public comment period that lasted almost two hours. The majority opposed the plant re-opening.” WSKG covers the Tompkins County Legislature’s vote opposing the conversion of the Cayuga Power Plant to burn gas. Listen/read here

Tompkins Legislature Opposes Shift to Natural Gas at Cayuga Power Plant

November 21, 2018

by Devon Magliozzi

“The Tompkins County Legislature will send a strongly worded resolution to Albany opposing a proposal to convert the Cayuga Power Plant from coal to natural gas. About 50 members of the public spoke at Tuesday’s meeting in support of the resolution, which passed by a 12-2 vote.” The Ithaca Voice covers the November 20, 2018 Legislature vote. Read the article

Committee Approves Recommendation on Future of Cayuga Power Plant

November 16, 2018

by Marcia E. Lynch

“[Residents] expressed deep concern about continued dependence on fossil fuels, the dangers of an increase in greenhouse gas emissions including from methane, use of imported ‘fracked’ gas (inconsistent with the County’s past opposition to and the State’s prohibition of fracking), and the increased truck traffic and potential dangers associated with trucks transporting compressed natural gas (CNG) to fuel the plant.” The Lansing Star covers the November 9, 2018 special meeting of the Planning, Development, and Environmental Quality Committee of the Tompkins County Legislature. Read the article

Local Residents Voice Concerns about Cayuga Power Plant Switch to Natural Gas

November 9, 2018

by Kelsey O’Connor

“Of the crowd that came out, about 30 spoke at the special meeting at 9 a.m. Friday, Nov. 9. Nearly all urged legislators to go with the first resolution that used stronger language.” The Ithaca Voice covers the Tompkins County Planning, Development, and Environmental Quality Committee vote on the Resolutions addressing repowering of the Cayuga Power Plant. Read the article

County Committee Votes to “Urge” DEC Rejection of Cayuga Natural Gas Plan

November 9, 2018

by Edwin Viera

“Residents from communities all across Tompkins County showed up for the public comment portion of the meeting, which last around 90 minutes. Pleas were made with the committee to support ‘Resolution A,’ which asks for the DEC to reject the proposal outright…” featured coverage of the Tompkins County Planning, Development, and Environmental Quality Committee vote on repowering the Cayuga Power Plant with fracked gas. Read the article