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Waste incinerator in Sauget will comply with EPA permit demands


Sauget, Ill. – The general manager of a hazardous waste incinerator in Sauget, Ill. says the site will comply with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's demands that it get new permits.

In a letter last month, the EPA told the company to apply within a year for what's called a Title Five permit, which calls for more stringent monitoring and reporting.

Such permits have been required since the mid-1990s, and the Illinois EPA tried to issue a permit to the Sauget incinerator in 2003, but the federal EPA and environmental groups objected.

The incinerator had been allowed to operate under permits it had before the Title Five permits were required.

After the Metro East operation applies for a Title Five permit, the federal EPA has 18 months to decide if the application is acceptable.

The permits are meant to ensure that incinerators, power plants and factories don't exceed air pollution limits. They spell out allowable pollution limits, monitoring obligations and required compliance reports to air quality regulators.

The site is the former Onyx incinerator. It was bought earlier this year by Paris-based Veolia SA and now is operating as Veolia Environmental Services.

"Obviously the U.S. EPA and the IEPA have some difference of opinion. Our point is whoever has permitting authority, we're going to comply with all the statutory regulations," said Doug Harris, the incinerator's general manager.

Harris said the incinerator's Title V application was deemed complete since 1995, and the company has been paying fees for it since. "We certainly met all the requirements," he said.