By Miles Moore, Senior Washington Reporter
WASHINGTON (April 2, 2015) — Carbon black manufacturer Continental Carbon Co. has agreed to pay more than $99 million to mitigate alleged excessive emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said.
By undertaking the plant improvements mandated in the settlement, Houston-based Continental Carbon estimates it will spend approximately $98 million.
In turn, the EPA estimates those pollution controls will reduce emissions from the three Continental Carbon plants involved in the case by approximately 6,278 tons of sulfur dioxide and 1,590 tons of nitrogen oxide annually.
The plant improvements will include the installation, upgrade and operation of state-of-the-art pollution control devices, the EPA said.
In the consent decree announced March 23 by the EPA and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), Continental Carbon also will pay a $650,000 civil penalty. The EPA and DOJ will share that money with the states of Alabama and Oklahoma, which were co-plaintiffs in the case.
In addition, Continental Carbon must also spend $550,000 on environmental projects to alleviate the harmful effects of the alleged air pollutions. Some of that money must go to help local communities, including at least $25,000 on energy efficiency projects for Phenix City, Ala., Ponca City, Okla., and Sunray, Texas — the communities where the three Continental Carbon facilities in the case are located.