CLAIRTON, Pa. — Local environmental groups are declaring victory after the U.S. EPA granted a petition against U.S. Steel’s Clairton Coke Works that will force the Allegheny County Health Department to make changes to the company’s operating permit.
The plant was built in 1901 and has been operated by U.S. Steel since 1904.
The company has had issues with emissions in the past. In December, it was fined more than $450,000. A year prior, it was fined more than $850,000.
The most recent decision by the U.S. EPA followed a petition by a number of groups including the Group Against Smog and Pollution or “GASP.”
“They were out of compliance with numerous limitations and had been for a long time. This was a great opportunity for us to raise it,” senior attorney at GASP Pittsburgh John Baillie said.
The group, he says, is looking for two major items in the new permit.
“One is what the compliance schedule says, itself. The other is whether and to what extent they continue to violate the limitations.”
Channel 11 reached out to U.S. Steel and the Allegheny County Health Department.
“The letter was received and the Health Department is currently reviewing and drafting a response,” a county spokesperson said in a statement.
A spokesperson for U.S. Steel also issued a statement saying, “We will work with ACHD to appropriately respond to the EPA order.”
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