"Air Pollution Limits Tightened on Baltimore Incinerator"

"The Environmental Protection Agency has ordered air pollution limits tightened on a Baltimore trash-to-energy incinerator after finding the state improperly relaxed them and did not require adequate monitoring of the plant's toxic emissions.

Siding with environmentalists who had complained that the state was going easy on a major polluter, EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson directed the Maryland Department of the Environment to revise the permit it had issued the RESCO incinerator in South Baltimore. The facility, owned by Wheelabrator Techologies, burns trash from Baltimore and Baltimore County.

MDE spokeswoman Dawn Stoltzfus said state regulators would comply with the EPA's order to revise the incinerator's permit.

Three environmental groups had complained that the state had weakened limits on the amount of carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide RESCO could release into the air. The groups — the Environmental Integrity Project, the Baltimore Harbor Waterkeeper and Clean Water Action — originally had sued the state in January 2009, complaining it was not being strict enough on pollution from the incinerator. They appealed to the EPA after the state issued the permit with the disputed provisions anyway."

Timothy B. Wheeler reports for the Baltimore Sun April 19, 2010.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Air