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

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.

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