Energy

EPA, Shell Settle For $10 Million

Shell Chemical will install $10 million worth of pollution control and monitoring equipment at a Louisiana chemical plant after settling with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

The Department of Justice (DOJ) and Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality joined the EPA in pursuing charges against Shell for allegedly violating the Clean Air Act by not burning excess emissions through industrial flares.

“This settlement will improve air quality for citizens of Louisiana by reducing emissions of harmful air pollution,” EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said in a statement. “Today’s agreement demonstrates EPA’s dedication to working with states to pursue violations of laws that are critical to protecting public health and bring companies into compliance.”

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The settlement includes another $350,000 Shell must pay in civil penalties, $87,500 of which goes to Louisiana state regulators.

“This agreement is the latest in EPA’s and the Justice Department’s continuing efforts to work with our state partners to protect the American public from harmful air pollution,” Jeffrey H. Wood, acting assistant attorney general of environment and natural resources at the DOJ, said.

Pruitt’s EPA has backed off initiating action against companies for violating environmental regulations. In the first nine months of President Donald Trump’s administration, the agency has sought compensation about 39 percent of the total former President Barack Obama sought to punish companies in the same amount of time, according to a New York Times’ review of data.

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