Placer supes deny appeal of Lake Tahoe biomass plant

Staff report

TAHOE CITY, Calif. — The Placer County Board of Supervisors last week denied an appeal from Arizona-based Center for Biological Diversity regarding the proposed Lake Tahoe biomass project, while also voting in several provisions to hold the facility more accountable from an environmental standpoint.

According to a previous report, the appeal filed in late 2012 questioned the analysis of the project’s final environmental impact report, regarding potential greenhouse gas emission amounts and the facility’s potential ripple effect on area forests and forest management. The appeal also alleged the EIR does not comply with the California Environmental Quality Act.

Prior to a hearing before supervisors last Tuesday in Auburn, discussions between Placer County and the center resulted in the formation of seven conditions that address the source of the biomass and include additional review and enforcement provisions, according to a press release from the county.

With the approval of those conditions, the board unanimously voted down the appeal — which challenged the Placer County Planning Commission’s approval of the FEIR last December — at last Tuesday’s hearing, and also certified the FEIR and approved the project’s Conditional Use Permit.

According to the press release, Supervisor Jennifer Montgomery, whose Fifth District represents Lake Tahoe, praised Kevin Bundy, the attorney for the center, for working with the county.

“I think you helped us take what was already a good project and make it better,” she said in a statement. “That’s something we should really all try to do — to work together, now and moving into the future.”

According to previous reports, the facility proposed to be built at the Eastern Regional Landfill on Cabin Creek Road off Highway 89 between Tahoe City and Truckee could be operational as early as 2015.

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