Tuesday, September 18, 2012

State Rep Joe Mullery Announces Apparent Victory In The Northern Metals Struggle...

Stock photo, car being hauled off for scrap, blog post by John Hoff

Writing on his Facebook profile and asking for the information to be disseminated, State Rep Joe Mullery announced what appears to be a victory in the complex controversy surrounding Northern Metals and their request to increase their emissions. The issue has been covered extensively by Jeff Skrenes (writing as in his role as Hawthorne Neighborhood Housing Director) on the Hawthorne Voices blog, click here 

Mullery's sudden announcement makes it appear a victory has just happened and the controversy may be at an end, though that would be a lot to hope for...

Judge for yourself. Here is what Mullery wrote, with paragraph breaks inserted by this blogger.


[Please disseminate this to anyone with an interest in the Northside or air pollution]

I just returned from a meeting with Pollution Control Agency staff regarding info for the meeting on Sept. 25. We have good news. Because of our uproar over the initial request by Northern to greatly increase their allowed pollution, the company has now revised it down to what the PCA says is about what they are allowed under their present permit.

Northern had requested an increase in the allowed release of Particulate Matter 2.5 up to 4.2 lbs/hr. Their present permit allowed 0.43 but that didn't include the condensable PM2.5. The PCA says that if you included the condensable PM2.5 it amounted to about 1.83 lbs/hr which is what the PCA determined is appropriate according to their revised modelling in January. The company has changed it's request to 1.83.

Thanks to everyone in our community who did something to put pressure on the PCA. Originally, the PCA was going to allow the 4.2. We put up such a defense that the PCA did a lot more study and decided to only recommend 1.83.

I was also concerned when I heard the PCA is recommending that whole cars should be allowed to be put in the shredder, but they explained today that there would be no change from the present requirement that mercury switches, batteries, etc. will still have to be removed before the car is inserted. The PCA also explained that because of our pressure about the air pollution in the area, they have already begun looking at many of the other sources of air pollution in the area and will be setting up monitors.

I believe we impressed on the PCA that we want all pollution sources in this area brought within proper guidelines. I am trying to contact environmental experts to see if they agree with the PCA. I encourage everyone to come to the PCA meeting in our community to explain all this on Sept. 25 at 6:30 pm at Park Board Headquarters on 22nd Ave. N. and W. River Road.

There is also a meeting of the Citizens' Board on Oct 1 at the PCA office on Lafayette Road in St. Paul regarding whether to require an Environmental Impact Statement be done. The PCA is now recommending against it because Northern has greatly reduced its request.

If you have questions, you can contact me at 651-296-4262 or rep.joe.mullery@house.mn, or contact the PCA person handling questions on this (ralph.pibble@state.mn.us or 651-757-2657.

Again, thanks to everyone who weighed in on this issue. When working together for the Northside we can accomplish a lot.

(JNS notes: I capitalized "Northside" in the text above per the practice of this blog)

1 comment:

Johnny Northside! said...

The latest article on Minnesota Public Radio makes it sound like this isn't going well at all, in contrast to what Mullery was saying.