Newport plant owner to pay $84,000 penalty to state for exceeding pollution limits

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DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin issued a Notice of Conciliation and Administrative Penalty Assessment Order to MEDAL Air Liquide to resolve compliance issues with state regulations governing air pollution at the company’s Delaware facility in Newport.

The order for MEDAL Air Liquide calls for a cash penalty of $80,000, and an additional $4,000 as cost recovery reimbursement to DNREC associated with the department’s investigation.

MEDAL Air Liquide owns and operates a plant that produces semi-permeable hollow fiber polymeric gas-separation membranes used in a variety of applications, such as air separation, industrial inerting processes and hydrogen purification in petroleum refining that , enables low-sulfur fuels.

On May 31, 2018, internal review of emissions for all operations onsite resulted in the discovery that MEDAL Air Liquide had exceeded its daily volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions limit permitted by DNREC. Facility representatives informed the department of the exceedances on June 18, 2018. The facility has reduced its operations to comply with permitted VOC limits while negotiating the Conciliation Order with the department.

The Secretary’s Order addresses the air pollution compliance issues at the facility, and lays out a schedule for MEDAL Air Liquide to return to compliance that includes the application for and construction of a new thermal oxidizer – a control device that will ultimately result in a long-term reduction of emissions while allowing the facility to expand production.

The Notice of Conciliation and Administrative Penalty Assessment Order can be found on the DNREC website at

http://www.dnrec.delaware.gov/Info/Pages/SecOrders_Enforcement.aspx.

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