Rep. David Dreier (R-La Verne) has declared his opposition to a waste-to-energy plant proposed in the City of Irwindale on grounds that the technology is untested and the plant could increase smog and pollute ground water.

Dreier said he has asked the federal Environmenal Protection Agency to release its findings on the project, proposed by Pacific Waste Management Corp., and has asked the state Energy Commission to consider whether the Southern California Edison Co. needs the electricity the plant would produce. An EPA spokesman said the agency has received a permit application from Pacific Waste but is not yet prepared to release findings. John Bunnell, supervisor of cogeneration and small power development for Edison, said the utility has agreed to buy electricity from the Irwindale plant because it is required to contract with waste-to-energy plants under federal law. But, Bunnell said while Edison generally favors development of alternate energy sources, including waste-to-energy plants, it is not taking a position on any specific project. The Irwindale plant would burn trash to generate enough electricity to serve 40,000 homes.

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