Residents Concerned about New Fuel Plant in NLV - 8 News NOW

Residents Concerned about New Fuel Plant in NLV

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LAS VEGAS -- There is anger and confusion about a plant that North Las Vegas officials are looking allowing in the city.

The Florida-based company Enviro Tower Renewable promises to bring hundreds of jobs to the area. It is seeking a permit to build a plant at Lone Mountain near Losee roads.

People opposed to the plant rallied Thursday because of one word that describes this plant: gasification.

It is the process where a solid material reacted at extremely high temperatures. The resulting gas can be used as fuel. It is the opposite of incineration.

The company claims there is no flame or burning of waste because the gas chamber is deprived of oxygen, which means there is no combustion.

However, some people don't buy it.

Niger Innis, who is representing a civil action group and is also running for Congress, says North Las Vegas officials haven't been transparent about a possible gasification plant.

"We're pro jobs. We are pro-free market. We are pro industry, but not all industrial projects are the same," Innis, the national spokesman for Congress of Racial Equality, said. "Why is this coming to fruition in the dark? In the dark of night? This should be open to public hearings."

Innis and residents in the neighborhood say they never received any notice of public meetings. The city says it did sent out notifications.

Still, some parents oppose this type of plant.

"Last night at school registration, even for, just for one night, there was over 100 families that are not in favor of this," mom Jennie Moss said.

Moss fears for her kids safety.

"We don't know what the effects are going to be. People suggest, the researchers suggest that they will cause cancer, asthma, cardiovascular disease and I don't want my children breathing that in," Moss said.

A company representative claims the environmental concerns surfacing in the close-knit community are rumors.

"It is converted at such a temperature that nothing exists except oxygen and carbon and hydrogen. There is nothing left to smell. There is nothing left to be injurious," Keith Brinkley, an engineer with the Enviro Tower Renewable, said.

If approved, he claims the plant will safely convert construction waste into usable fuel.

"They have very, very strict safety measures in place, far above what is actually required. They have figured that at the highest level, it is a thousand times less than what is allowed and in some of the more dangerous chemicals, it is a million times or less what is allowed," Brinkley said.

The issue was expected to appear on the agenda at the next North Las Vegas City Council meeting, but the mayor's office says they now plan to table it to hear from the community.

The company behind the plant told 8 News NOW it plans to talk to homeowners about the project. It says any emissions will be undetectable and insignificant.

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