Company forced to pay thousands for polluting Oklahoma air
PONCA CITY, Okla. – A company that operates in Oklahoma is being forced to pay thousands of dollars for polluting the air.
The Environmental Protection Agency found that Continental Carbon Company plants violated the Clean Air Act.
Continental manufactures carbon black, a fine powder used in tires, plastics, rubber, inkjet toner and cosmetics.
Because the oil used to make carbon black is high in sulfur, large amounts of nitrogen oxide, sulfur dioxide and particular matter are sent into the air.
The chemicals are significant contributors to acid rain, smog and haze. It can also cause severe respiratory and cardiovascular impacts, along with premature death.
Now, the company has agreed to pay a civil penalty of $650,000, which will be shared with Alabama and Oklahoma. It must also spend $550,000 on environmental projects to help mitigate the harmful effects of air pollution on the environment and local communities.
“Today’s agreement is good news for residents living near Continental facilities, many of whom were overburdened by air pollution for far too long and whose children, like all Americans, should be able to breathe clean air.” said Assistant Attorney General John C. Cruden of the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division. “The agreement also reflects our continuing efforts to vigorously enforce the Clean Air Act to protect public health and the environment. The settlement requires Continental to control large sources of air pollution with advanced technology and requires projects that will have a direct and positive impact on Continental’s neighbors.”
Continental estimates that it will spend about $98 million to implement the required measures.