Friends of Lake Tahoe:
"The Voice of a Powerful Coalition of Local Residents and Non-Resident Property Owners Working Together for a Common Objective!"
Friends of Lake Tahoe was created to protect the Lake Tahoe region and halt the construction of a disastrous biomass power plant in the Lake Tahoe Basin.
Children at Risk: Placer County and the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA) are planning to build in the Tahoe Basin (North Shore - Kings Beach) such a facility, just off Highway 267, less than a mile from the water, within 1000 feet of an elementary school, in a high density population area. If approved, it will operate 24/7, 365 days a year and burn all the forest waste in a radius of at least 30 miles that is currently trucked out of the Basin to Loyalton, just north of Truckee, for burning in a biomass plant located there.
Environmental Degradation: It will pollute not only from Incline Village to Tahoe City but, due to the nature of the air inversion ecology of Tahoe's Basin, it will cast a haze that will drift and drift over the entire lake and degrade air and water quality everywhere.
BIOMASS BURNING IN THE BASIN IS NOT GREEN: While we do not oppose the use of biomass combustion conceptually, plants should not be located in a basin subject to air inversions. Within reasonable limits and understanding the facts of the region, we could support a plant at Cabin Creek (just south of Truckee and out of the Basin) where all forest waste goes for processing into biomass fuel. Significant are questions of scale and proximity in terms of sustainable fuel sources in the specific regions of the Basin. Utility-scaled power plants 1-3 MW consume 16,000 to 48,000 green tons per year. This exceeds what can be sustainably produced from maintenance fuel reduction treatments in either the north/west shores or the south shore area. Smaller applications (e.g. 200kw) that fit the supply source would have significantly less environmental impact. In no case should biomass fuels be shipped into the Tahoe Basin for combustion just to make a power plant work.
Please be reminded, however, no biomass power plant will reduce open burning or increase the removal of forest fuels thereby reducing wildfires! These are separate issues!
AN ECONOMIC MISTAKE: Start up funding coming from earmarks not unlike those that funded the famous "bridge to nowhere," a Kings Beach power plant will cost millions to build, is totally unnecessary, and will require subsidies of precious tax dollars. It needs to be stopped.
CLASSIC BUREAUCRACIES AT WORK: Charging forward with a well intended idea but implemented in the wrong place ecologically (a basin subject to air inversions), a biomass burning power plant located in Kings Beach will endanger a precious congressionally declared outstanding national resource: Lake Tahoe! It is both sad and frightening. It should be located at Cabin Creek, out of the Basin.
DISINFORMATION OR BUREAUCRATIC CONFUSION?: Running what many consider to be an overly ambitious campaign replete with questionable claims, both Placer County and TRPA have stated in official governmental documents to have supporters and partnerships regarding the project proposed for Kings Beach, from the Environmental Protection Agency to the University of California, that don't exist. Challenged as to the veracity of such claims, they have now recanted, citing "inadvertent" language errors in such documents
Ignorance is NOT Bliss: Exploiting fears of wildfires and ignorance of current practices regarding open burning and the removal of forest wastes for disposal outside the Basin, they suggest connections to wildfire and pollution reductions that don't exist and won't occur. And, we anticipate that the current environmental study of the proposal, awarded without competitive bidding, will be seriously flawed.
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Study the "Policy Positions" in this Website.
Review the "Myths" associated with this Biomass Project.
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