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Environmental Groups file suit against Weed, CA biomass project January 8, 2009

Filed under: Biomass,Legal/Courts,Northern California,Wood Products — nwrenewablenews @ 3:05 pm
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The Mount Shasta Bioregional Ecology Center and Weed Concerned Citizens filed a suit in mid-December against the Siskiyou County Board of Supervisors, challenging their Nov. 13 decision to approve a use permit for Roseburg Forest Products to build a 15-megawatt biomass cogeneration plant in Weed.
The petition alleges that the supervisors’  actions violated the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), and the petitioners are seeking a determination from the Siskiyou County Superior Court that the board of supervisors’  actions were invalid and void.
According to the suit, the Environmental Impact Report (EIR) prepared for the project fails to satisfy the requirements of CEQA and the CEQA guidelines.
The board of supervisors, in a strong response dated Dec. 29 and e-mailed to news organizations on Jan. 5, stated their continuing support for the project.
Titled  “Statement of Board of Supervisors Regarding Mount Shasta Bioregional Ecology Center, et al. v. County of Siskiyou and Roseburg Forest Products,” the statement reads:
“The Siskiyou County Board of Supervisors is issuing this statement with respect to its position regarding the recent lawsuit filed challenging the approval of the biomass cogeneration electric power plant to be constructed by Roseburg Forest Products Company at the Weed Veneer Mill facility.
“The Board of Supervisors continues to stand firmly behind this project and the approval granted. It is unfortunate that a few disgruntled individuals have filed, what appears to be, a suit lacking in substance in an attempt to forestall the development of this critically needed facility.
“Not only is this facility consistent with the Governor’s desire to develop renewable energy resources, but it is also essential for the continued economic vitality of the County of Siskiyou.
“It is the Board of Supervisors’  understanding that as many as 33 employees could be laid off within the next few weeks because of this lawsuit and that there is a very real potential for permanent harm to the County’s economic base. It is the Board of Supervisors’  opinion that this lawsuit is an abuse of the CEQA process and the Board calls on the Governor of the State of California, the Legislature, and the Attorney General, to take immediate action to support the County of Siskiyou in its efforts to comply with the State’s desire to have these types of environmentally friendly facilities created.
“In light of the fact that the State is supporting the removal of clean hydroelectric power from the County, it is even more essential that environmentally friendly sources of power generation be put in place. The Board directs the Clerk to send a copy of this Statement to the Governor of the State of California, and the Attorney General of the State of California, as well as the County’s Legislative Representatives and Congressman Wally Herger, as its request for their support for this project.


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