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Public Hearing on Monday in Cambridge on Kendall Station Discharge Permit

Release Date: 09/09/04
Contact Information:

Contact: Peyton Fleming, EPA Press Office (617-918-1008)

For Immediate Release: September 9, 2004; Release # 04-09-01

BOSTON – A public hearing will be held Monday, Sept. 13, in Cambridge regarding a proposed discharge permit for the Mirant Kendall station power plant that will limit the Cambridge facility’s environmental impacts on the Lower Charles River. The 283-megawatt power plant is the largest industrial discharger on the Charles River.

The public hearing will be held from 7 to 10 pm at the Agassiz (formerly Baldwin) School Auditorium at 28 Sacramento St. in Cambridge. EPA and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, which jointly prepared the draft permit, will hold an information session at 6:30 pm to explain the draft permit. EPA is accepting written public comments on the draft permit until Sept. 30, 2004.

The draft permit focuses primarily on the potential environmental impacts from the power plant’s once-through cooling system, which requires water withdrawals from the Charles River and heated discharges back into the river.

The draft permit requires seasonal barrier nets or other devices to limit the number of fish that are trapped or pulled into the power plant when cooling water is pumped into the facility. It also requires new continuous water quality monitoring, including temperature readings, that will evaluate the ecological health of the Lower Charles River Basin, including potential impacts the facility may be having on the lower basin. It also includes new limits on heated-water discharges when water temperatures in the river's lower basin become excessively warm, thereby jeopardizing the ecological health of the river, including native and migratory fish populations.

“This draft permit is an important component of achieving our goal of making this precious river fishable and swimmable in the near future,”said Robert W. Varney, regional administrator of EPA’s New England Office.

Written public comments should be postmarked no later than Sept. 30. Before making a final permit decision, EPA will review all written comments. Written comments should be sent to:

For more detailed information on the permit and key supporting documents, please visit

Related Information:
Kendall Power Plant Permit
NPDES Permits