MIDLOTHIAN, Texas (Dec. 18, 2002) — A citizens' environmental group is decrying a proposal from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality to allow cement kilns to burn tires as fuel.
“What we're opposed to is that they're not mandating any emissions reductions with this rule, as they're supposed to do under federal law,” said Katy Hubener, executive director of the Blue Skies Alliance. “This is a giant loophole through which they can drive their cement trucks.”
Texas Industries Inc.'s cement plant in Midlothian—the main beneficiary of the proposed rule—already burns hazardous waste in its kilns, Ms. Hubener said. She claims that the facility gives off 2.2 million pounds of toxic emissions annually compared with 849,000 per year from the whole city of Dallas, just 25 miles north.
Spokespersons for the commission and Texas Industries couldn't be reached for comment, but said in an Associated Press report that the rule will reduce emissions from cement kilns, and that opponents misunderstand it.