EPA on Sept. 3 announced a settlement with HA International LLC, a producer of resin-coated sand for the foundry and hydraulic fracturing industries, to resolve alleged violations of the Clean Air Act at the company’s Oregon, Ill., facility. The settlement requires the company to install equipment to reduce the facility’s emissions of volatile organic compounds by an estimated 92 percent or 797 tons annually.
HA International also is required to pay a $100,000 civil penalty and to complete environmental projects valued at $100,000 in the Oregon area. These projects include improving the heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems at Oregon High School and the Creston School in Creston, Ill. The projects will increase energy efficiency and reduce environmental asthma triggers in the schools. HA International also agreed to upgrade dust collection equipment at its Oregon facility.
“As a result of this settlement, people in the Oregon area will breathe cleaner air,” said U.S. EPA Regional Administrator Susan Hedman. “Children at Oregon and Creston schools also will benefit from improved indoor air quality.”
Following complaints from Oregon area residents about a persistent odor from HA International, EPA inspected the facility and required testing of emissions from the company’s production lines. Test results showed that emissions of volatile organic compounds, primarily the hazardous air pollutants phenol and formaldehyde, exceeded limits in the Illinois Clean Air Act State Implementation Plan. EPA concluded that the company’s emissions of formaldehyde, a probable human carcinogen, also presented a health risk.