Mayo steam line project delayed
From staff reports
Construction of a steam-energy line from Rochester Public Utilities to Mayo Clinic faces delays because of emissions concerns.
The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency closed a comment period Wednesday on the $11.7 million project, taking five letters in favor of the project and one letter against it.
The opposition letter was jointly submitted by the Izaak Walton League and Minnesotans for an Energy-Efficient Economy.
Because of the opposition, the Pollution Control Agency's citizens board must consider whether to require RPU to perform an additional study of the environmental effects of the steam project.
The board meets monthly and won't consider the RPU matter until late October at the earliest, said an agency spokeswoman. RPU officials wanted to start construction this fall.
If the project is approved, RPU would boost output at its Silver Lake Power Plant to deliver pressurized steam to the Mayo campus through underground pipes. The burning of more coal for the additional output could perhaps double the plant's emission of nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide, carbon monoxide and other pollutants.