February 1, 2010
Chesapeake Bay Foundation Urges Dendron to Deny O.D.E.C. Rezoning Request
(DENDRON, VA)—The Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) is urging the Dendron Town Council to deny land use and zoning changes sought by Old Dominion Electric Cooperative (ODEC) to build Virginia's largest coal-fired power plant.
ODEC's rezoning request lacks the necessary detail for informed public debate about the significant and adverse community, environmental, and public health impacts posed by the proposed plant, said CBF Science Advocate Chris Moore.
"ODEC is seeking a change in the use of more than half the town's land area to build a huge industrial facility that will impact not only the residents of Dendron but the citizens of Surry, Sussex, and the entire Hampton Roads region," Moore said. "The zoning changes sought are inconsistent with Dendron's comprehensive plan. Moreover, if built, the plant's pollution could make it difficult for the Hampton Roads region to meet new clean air and Chesapeake Bay pollution standards, thereby hamstringing the entire region's future economic growth."
ODEC has proposed building the plant on 1,400 acres in Dendron and Surry County, as well as on a 1,200-acre alternative site in neighboring Sussex County. According to ODEC's permit applications on file with state authorities, the plant would produce significant nitrogen, mercury, and smog pollution over the local community and across the Chesapeake Bay region.
The Dendron Town Council has scheduled a public hearing on the zoning changes for tonight, and both the Surry and Sussex County Boards of Supervisors have scheduled rezoning hearings for Thursday, February 4.