Meeting Held in Mesquite on Coal Fired Power Plant - 8 News NOW

Jonathan Humbert, Reporter

Meeting Held in Mesquite on Coal Fired Power Plant

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More than 200 people from all over showed up in Mesquite Thursday night to air their concerns at a public hearing on a coal fired power plant. If the plant is built, it will be located a little more than 80 miles northeast of Las Vegas and would provide power to half a million homes.

The Toquop company, Sithe Energy, is willing to sell the power to Las Vegas. But they also hope to sell it to neighboring states and even as far as Colorado and New Mexico instead of using it there.

Sithe says the proposed plant just north of the new developments in Mesquite will be the cleanest, most advanced plant in the country.

They back up the claim by saying the plant would use 80-percent less water than more traditional coal plants -- that still equals the same amount of water used for five golf courses per year.

The group Defend the Desert says even if this plant is cleaner, coal is the wrong answer.

"We think that there are new ways to generate electricity. And yes, it is slow coming, but I think it's knocking on our door," said the group's Michele Burkett.

Frank Maisano of Sithe Energy responds, "They are desperate for power in this region. And there's no doubt that they are going to face blackouts and other issues in the short term."

Burkett was one of the many protestors during Thursday night's permit hearing. 

Email your comments to Legislative Reporter Jonathan Humbert.

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