Documents obtained by Environment Victoria and the Environment Defenders Office show that the Hazelwood power station has repeatedly breached its pollution licence limits in recent years.
In its ‘Statement of Compliance’ for 2009 owners International Power admit that Hazelwood breached four of the twenty-two conditions of its EPA licence.
The plant’s environmental performance reports for 2007 and 2008 also reveal that in both years the ageing power plant failed to meet licence conditions and environmental targets.
The breaches relate to water quality in discharges from the plant’s cooling pond to the Morwell River; dust and particulate levels. The reports also outline that environmental targets relating to gaseous emissions from the smokestacks, including carbon monoxide, sulphur dioxide and sulphur trioxide were also exceeded
Environment Victoria’s Campaigns Director Mark Wakeham said today:
“These documents show a worrying pattern of Hazelwood failing to comply with its licence conditions and failing to meet environmental targets.”
“On several occasions when the plant exceeded its licence limits, the EPA granted the company an emergency approval to pollute, protecting International Power from prosecution under environmental laws.”
“The power station’s inability to meet its licence conditions is further reason to replace the ageing power station. It’s long been known that Hazelwood is a major greenhouse polluter and water user. What is less well known is that the power station is failing to meet its basic licence conditions.”
“Hazelwood’s repeated failure to meet its environmental conditions should provide added impetus to all political parties ahead of the state election to outline clear plans to replace all of Hazelwood in the next term of government.
“It’s further evidence that its time to retire this polluting and underperforming power station and replace it with clean energy projects and jobs.”
Details of the breaches come ahead of a major Melbourne rally on Saturday calling for the replacement of all of Hazelwood power station. Thousands are expected at the rally which begins at 1pm at the State Library followed by a march to Parliament House.
For interviews contact:
Mark Wakeham 0439 700 501
Media assistance: Louise Matthiesson 0417 017 844