Limestone 3

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This article is part of the Coal Issues portal on SourceWatch, a project of CoalSwarm and the Center for Media and Democracy. See here for help on adding material to CoalSwarm.

NRG was a proposed 745 MW coal plant in Jewitt, Texas. The plant would have been built at NRG Energy’s existing 1614 MW Limestone Generating Station.[1] However, on December 6, 2012 NRG Energy announced they were canceling the plant. The Sierra Club reported that the company decided to abandon its plans "due to the changing economics of coal plants, the growth of wind energy in the state, and because of legal challenges and grassroots opposition from Sierra Club and allied groups across Texas."[2]

On Oct. 9, 2007, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (CEQ) released the draft air permit for the plant. Environmental groups are mobilizing against the plant; NRG is currently attempting to negotiate a deal with Environmental Defense, which – similar to the group’s deal with TXU – would see NRG limit emissions, in exchange for a commitment from Environmental Defense not to oppose the plant. On Nov. 29, 2007 – fearing a backlash similar to that against TXU – NRG committed to offset all emissions from the new plant.[3]

On Dec. 10, environmental activists and local critics attended a CEQ hearing in Groesbeck.[4]

According to an August 2008 update, the Sierra Club and other environmental groups continue to oppose the proposed Limestone III coal plant. The Sierra Club, represented by Environmental Integrity Project, is contesting NRG's draft air pollution permit. Permit hearings before the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) are expected to take place over the next several months.[5]

In March 2009, the hearing on Limestone III's air permit concluded. The two administrative law judges involved in the case will issue their recommendation in approximately two months and the final decision from the TCEQ is expected in summer 2009.[6]

On December 9, 2009, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality approved the air permit for the Limestone plant. The Sierra Club and other environmental groups said they would continue to challenge the Limestone 3 permit, despite an agreement between NRG, the Environmental Defense Fund, and the Texas Clean Air Cities Coalition in which NRG promised to offset half of the plant's carbon dioxide emissions and reduce other pollutants below state requirements.[7]

Project Details

Sponsor: NRG Energy
Location: Jewitt, Limestone County, TX
Capacity: 745 MW
Type: Supercritical
Projected in service: 2012
Status: Permitting


Citizen Groups



  1. Emissions from Recently Permitted and Proposed Coal Burning Power Plants, Stop the Coal Plant website, August 7, 2007.
  2. "NRG Cancels Proposed Limestone 3 Coal Project" Sierra Club, December 6, 2012.
  3. NRG Lifts Page from TXU on Coal Plant, Dallas Morning News, November 29, 2007.
  4. Public Meeting to Address Proposed Coal Plant, Dallas Business Journal, December 7, 2007.
  5. "Stopping the Coal Rush", Sierra Club, accessed November 2008. (This is a Sierra Club list of new coal plant proposals.)
  6. "Stopping the Coal Rush", Sierra Club, accessed May 2009. (This is a Sierra Club list of new coal plant proposals.)
  7. "NRG obtains air permit for new Texas coal unit," Reuters, December 9, 2009.

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