Derek Franz

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March 27, 2013
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EVCE updates Gypsum on biomass plant construction

Eagle Valley Clean Energy LLC's project manager, Bethany Vorthman, and EVCE's attorney, Sarah Baker, gave Gypsum town council an update on the biomass plant's construction on Tuesday.

The plant is on track to be operational by mid-December, Vorthman said. Two fuel silos were recently completed and foundations have been laid for the other structures.

One Gypsum resident spoke out at the meeting, expressing concerns about dust mitigation at the site, which includes several berms that will eventually be landscaped.

"We've been watering it down but it evaporates so fast," Vorthman said.

Gypsum Town Planner Lana Gallegos and Gypsum Town Manager encouraged EVCE to get more aggressive about dust mitigation.

"It could become a code violation," Gallegos said.

Shroll suggested that the finished berms be hydroseeded now.

"Pin that dirt to the ground so it doesn't blow," he said.

Baker updated the town about the final plot subdivision.

EVCE had to buy the entire 93-acre parcel from LaFarge but it only needs 16 acres for the plant, which will produce 11.5 megawatts of electricity a year by burning wood. The site is directly east of the American Gypsum plant, between U.S. Highway 6 and the Eagle River. EVCE has been in discussions with the town and Eagle County to possibly make the remaining land public open space.

Gypsum council members approved the subdivision, which will allow EVCE to sell the land.

"We have not changed any zoning - it's still zoned as developing resource," Baker assured the audience.

Council member Tom Edwards asked if turning the subdivided lot into open space was still a possibility.

"I think that's still a definite possibility that the landowner would like to do," Baker said.

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The VailDaily Updated Mar 27, 2013 01:30PM Published Mar 27, 2013 01:29PM Copyright 2013 The VailDaily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.