Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Clairton Coke Works to Reduce Pollution

Residents of Liberty and Clairton can expect cleaner air in the years to come, thanks to emissions reductions slated for the Clairton Coke Works.

Owner U.S. Steel and the Allegheny County Health Department signed a Memorandum of Understanding to reduce the plant’s fine particulate pollution by 320 tons each year.

ACHD spokesman Guillermo Cole says the air quality improvements will come from the replacement of two quench towers that cool the coke, and from bringing three coke oven batteries into emissions compliance.

Cole says this agreement comes in addition to a 2008 document already requiring the plant to reduce particulate pollution.

“We’ve already seen the permanent shutdown of three older coke oven batteries. That has reduced particulate emissions already by 383 tons. The rebuild of Battery B has also dramatically reduced emissions, so these further improvements come on top of some major emission reductions that have already been achieved.”

Cole says the new emissions reductions are not tied to an explosion at the plant’s B Battery earlier this summer.

The Liberty/Clairton area is now expected to attain the national air quality standard by December of 2013, the same time this project is slated to be completed.

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