Intel has done and is doing. What Intel must do
should not have been permitted to build what would
become the world's largest semiconductor plant within several
hundred yards of established residential areas. Our air
pollution problem in these areas began when Intel did its first major
expansion in the early 1990s. Before that time, Corrales and other
adjacent communities had the pure air that would be expected in a rural
don't expect Intel to abandon its multi-billion dollar investment in its
Rio Rancho facility, but we do expect them to use the best existing
technology to minimize its toxic emissions. Unfortunately, Intel
had done the opposite by requesting (and receiving) a minor-source
permit from the NMED (New
Mexico Environment Department). This permit, which has been called
a "sham" by the former NMED permit-writing team leader,
exempts Intel from using the best available pollution-control technology
that would apply to them as a major source.
big step Intel could take in the right direction would be to adopt the
new supercritical carbon dioxide (SCORR) process developed at Los Alamos
National Laboratory. This process would replace most of the toxic solvents
Intel now uses with benign carbon dioxide. It could also
reduce Intel's current daily water consumption of four million
gallons, by as much as 90%, which is a major bonus in the drought
currently affecting New Mexico. Intel has failed to meet with
the developer of this process in spite of many requests to do so.
claim that this process is not yet commercially available is not true, as
we have directed them to a commercial supplier of SCORR systems.
The price of $2 million may seem like a lot of money, but it represents
only 0.1% of what Intel just spent to build its new FAB 11X facility.