Monday was a “Monday” in every sense of the word for Plant Washington and its developer, Power4Georgians. Before the EPA could announce a long-awaited carbon pollution rule, the Georgia State Supreme Court ruled that the 30+ indictments against former Cobb EMC CEO Dwight Brown will not be dismissed. That clears the way for Brown to have to defend himself against numerous charges of racketeering, theft, and making false statements (layman’s term is lying).
Who knows what type of complicated web might be unraveled in a trial involving federal racketeering and such? Plant Washington’s developer, Dean Alford, worked as Brown’s Vice-President at Cobb EMC when he secured the no-bid contract for Power4Georgians’ coal plant. Could he and many others be called to testify in Brown’s trial? Will co-op members across the state who found themselves obligated to a multi-billion dollar, back room deal coal plant camp outside the courthouse in order to secure a seat during the trial?
The court ruling came out hours before EPA Director Gina McCarthy could announce, and then sign, proposed carbon pollution rules for existing power plants.
McCarthy didn’t disappoint: the proposed regulations will require a 30 percent reduction in 2005 carbon emission levels. Plant Washington wasn’t even announced until January of 2008, and Allied Energy Services CEO Dean Alford stated in community meetings since then that the plant can’t go forward if it has to control for carbon pollution.
Alford hoped for an exemption by signing a boiler contract in the spring of 2013, but there’s no magic in just signing the document. Allied Energy hasn’t yet demonstrated to the EPA that it met the stringent requirements to be placed in a special category of projects that would emit carbon.
But now it won’t matter whether Plant Washington is determined to be an “existing” or “new” source of carbon pollution because controlling carbon emissions will have to happen for all power plants emitting carbon.
Plant Washington isn’t the “It Girl” any more. It’s dress is out of style, the hem has been stepped on, and the corsage is wilted. Now everyone wants to dance with Renewable Wind and Free Sunshine. Fortunately they never seem to run out of energy.