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SD Supreme Court upholds refinery permit

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 24, 2013 at 5:21 pm •  Published: January 24, 2013

Ed Cable, of Save Union County, said Thursday that he was disappointed but not surprised by the ruling. He said the company still faces many hurdles as it let its land-purchase options slip.

"All this is probably a moot issue since they no longer control any ground whatsoever, not even one acre" Cable said.

Hyperion had thousands of acres of options in Union County secured for the refinery, but the company failed to extend them on Sept. 30. Company officials said in October that they were still talking to landowners, and the statement released Thursday did not address the land options.

The high court also ruled that the state did not err by extending a construction deadline for the plant.

The original permit called for construction to begin by Feb. 20, 2011, but company officials said the project was delayed because the recession caused problems in securing financing. The board issued a revised permit in September that reflected updated national air quality standards and new pollution-control technology and gives Hyperion until March to start construction.

The Hyperion Energy Center would include a power plant that produces electricity for the refinery. It would convert a byproduct of the refinery process — solid petroleum coke — into gas that would be burned to produce electricity.

Hyperion contends that the refinery would be a clean, modern plant that would use the most advanced, commercially feasible emissions control technology.

Company officials have said that efforts to secure financing are progressing, but they have not provided details.

Cable said the groups haven't decided whether to appeal the state Supreme Court's ruling.

"We are reviewing all of our options at the moment, and there are several actions which we could take," he said.


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