Down in Cincinnati, a nitric acid production facility will pay $750,000 in penalties to settle violations of the Clean Air Act. The parent companies also agreed to install state-of-the-art pollution control equipment at the facility that will reduce nitrogen oxides (NOx) emissions by more than 200 tons per year.
Agrium US Inc. and Royster-Clark Inc. did not obtain necessary permits and did not install the required pollution control equipment when expanding the plant. The modifications caused the facility to emit more NOx than allowed by federal law.
The companies increased profits by ignoring environmental law.
The facility releases NOx as part of its nitric acid production process. Nitric acid is used to make fertilizer, explosives and organic chemicals. NOx causes severe respiratory problems, contributes to childhood asthma, acid rain, climate change, smog and haze, and impairs visibility in national parks. Emissions from nitric acid plants can be carried significant distances downwind, causing air quality problems in nearby states.
Cincinatti Nitric Acid Air Pollution EPA