Exxon settles pollution case with feds by upgrading 8 plants, in - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Exxon settles pollution case with feds by upgrading 8 plants, including one in Baton Rouge

Source: WAFB Source: WAFB

ExxonMobil is settling air pollution cases with the Trump administration by promising to spend about $300 million on pollution-control technology at several plants along the Gulf Coast.

Federal officials said Tuesday that the settlement will prevent thousands of tons of future pollution, including cancer-causing benzene, in eight petrochemical plants in Texas and Louisiana.

The settlement ends allegations that Exxon violated the federal Clean Air Act by releasing excess emissions of harmful pollutants.

Exxon says it will install and operate pollution-control and monitoring technology at petrochemical plants in Baytown, Beaumont and Mont Belvieu, Texas, and near Baton Rouge. The company released the following statement Tuesday afternoon:

Over the last several years, ExxonMobil has worked closely with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Department of Justice (DOJ) to address concerns about flaring and to invest in opportunities to improve flaring efficiency at our U.S. chemical sites. As part of that work, we have finalized a consent decree with the EPA and DOJ which includes requirements to upgrade and operate flare monitoring and control systems at our chemical facilities, including Baton Rouge.

The agreement includes a penalty of $2.5 million and an investment of nearly $300 million in flare efficiency and capture instrumentation and equipment. All flare instrumentation will be operational when the Consent Decree is effective.

As part of the consent decree and in consultation with our local government, ExxonMobil will also invest about $2.6 million in supplemental environmental projects in Texas and Louisiana.

We take our environmental responsibility seriously, and employees spend thousands of hours every year monitoring, validating and documenting our compliance with regulations and permits. We remain committed to maintaining high standards of environmental performance as well as making a positive contribution to the livelihood and well-being of our communities.

In fact, ExxonMobil Baton Rouge has achieved a 76 percent reduction in VOCs, an 82 percent reduction in SO2 and a 37 percent reduction in NOX since 1990. We have spent about $1.6 billion over the last five years to improve environmental performance.

The Justice Department and the State of Colorado announced a smaller settlement over pollution charges against Denver-based PDC Energy Inc.

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