The People vs. Pet Coke: Las Brisas on the Run

Last week, the Administrative Law Judges moved the Las Brisas hearings back by six weeks due to an accident that severely injured a key expert witness for the Environmental Defense Fund.  In response, the Las Brisas Energy Center contended that this delay was not necessary because the EDF’s witness was not, in fact, an expert witness.

In a race to beat the clock, the Las Brisas Energy Center is hoping to be able to move forward with the pet-coke plant in downtown Corpus Christi before the Environmental Protection Agency announces new regulations for greenhouse gas emissions- regulations they clearly do not look forward to.

The ALJs responded to the Las Brisas Energy Center’s request to move forward with a hearing as soon as possible with a blistering rejection, stating that they “found the Applicant [Las Brisas Energy Center] in a predicament of its own making,” having “failed to meet its burden of proof when given a two-week hearing to present its application… Applicant finds itself in the present predicament because it failed to prove its Application met all applicable rules and regulation during the first hearing.”

Translation? This is your own fault.

But wait- we’ve just discovered that even before the ALJs responded, Las Brisas Energy Center has filed a motion for a new hearing before the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality… even before the judges refused to change the delayed hearing date.

Will the TCEQ lend the Las Brisas pet-coke plant a helping hand? Or will they stand by the letter of the law?  Stay tuned, we’ll find out soon enough.

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