Next week, the Finger Lakes crypto asset will meet DEC criteria

Next week, the Finger Lakes crypto asset will meet DEC criteria

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Days ahead of a legal deadline, a controversial crypto mining and power plant in Yates County is poised to complete the installation of wire grids designed to better protect neighboring Lake Seneca.

Greenidge Generation President Dale Irwin said, “We’re a collection of residents who really care about the lake — we’re not a bunch of computers as people sometimes portray us.” “A lot of my friends live near the lake , where they spend every summer and winter. We are very pleased that after 80 years of operation we can now install the best technologies to protect the lakes.”

By the middle of next week, Greenidge Generation Holdings Inc. expects to have completed the installation of cylindrical wedge wire screens at the site to reduce fish mortality and damage to the Seneca Lake ecosystem. The company’s deadline was extended to January 20 by the State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) this fall.

More than 130 million gallons of water are drawn from the lake each day by the facility, which then pumps water back into the lake at a temperature of 108 degrees Fahrenheit, killing fish, eggs and other aquatic life, according to DEC.

According to a statement released by the DEC on Friday, “The DEC subjects all environmental permit applications to a transparent and rigorous evaluation process designed to protect human health and the environment.”

Greenidge was initially given five years by the DEC to plan, research and complete the project. Greenidge waited until March 18, 2022 to submit an application for the required Article 15 permit and DEC Water Quality Certificate. Public comments on the motions were welcome until September 1; After that date, DEC issued permits allowing work to be completed on September 27th.

According to those who have long campaigned for more protections for the lake’s aquatic species, the screens are not enough, although a DEC pilot study shows they are only about 77% effective.

According to Yvonne Taylor, vice president of the Seneca Lake Guardian, “It does nothing to protect our water in terms of hot water withdrawal and return to our lake, which is responsible for some of our problems with dangerous algal blooms.” This toxin is both for Harmful to both humans and animals.

Greenidge emphasizes that the factory is in compliance with state regulations because the DEC has spent years examining and approving the screens and process. Greenidge submitted an investigation into the thermal study criteria to the Division on August 31, 2022 and DEC evaluated and approved a work plan for this study. The agency reports that the DEC is still reviewing the study.

According to DEC on Friday, “The installation of the wedge wire screens is part of the set of technologies that make up this [best technology possible].” “The variable speed drive pumps and wedge wire screens with a slot width of 0.5 mm and a suction speed of less than 0.5 feet per second reflect [the greatest technology] at the Greenidge site. The DEC anticipates that the integration of these technologies will reduce the impact and entrainment of fish, juveniles and eggs. According to DEC, it will be comparable to the reductions the facility would have experienced if a closed loop cooling system had been implemented.” Greenidge is expected to update the department on how well the improvements are reducing the negative impact on the lake.

Critics, Greenidge President Irwin said, don’t understand the process because it took the state years of research and testing. Irwin explained that “this will require years of study, engineering and procurement that will be mandated and a process that will be outlined by the DEC. [the United States Environmental Protection Agency] as a backstop and the US Army Corps of Engineers.” “…We thought it was going to be a full five years when we got that approval five or six years ago.”

Seneca Lake Guardian leaders have announced they will sue the facility later this month, alleging that the DEC did not receive enough information about the discharge’s impact on the lake and its compliance with federal water standards. Earthjustice support helped Seneca Lake Guardian file a 60-day letter of intent to file a civil lawsuit on November 17. Recent rumors suggest that Greenidge is millions of dollars in debt and may file for bankruptcy, compounding problems for the factory. According to a Greenidge representative Friday, the company would not have completed the screens had it not planned to continue operations. The recent public filing also shows how the company has adjusted its debt with a major lender and strengthened its financial position.

Environmental activists claim that despite the DEC-approved renovations, they will continue to push for the facility’s activities to cease entirely. They are in total denial, Taylor added. “Really, it’s over now. They need to close for our neighborhood to start recovering.”

Summary of the news:

Next week, the Finger Lakes crypto asset will meet DEC criteria. Check all the news and articles from the latest business news updates.

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