March 23, 2008

CEMEX Permit Challenged

The CEMEX cement plant is one of the worst polluters in the Denver metro area, spewing massive amounts of smog-forming nitrogen oxides, along with toxic mercury and dioxins, near the town of Lyons. Not only that, but the plant regularly violates clean air laws.

Most recently, the Environmental Protection Agency found CEMEX is illegally operating the Lyons plant without using up-to-date pollution controls.

That's why Rocky Mountain Clean Air Action has taken aim at CEMEX's air pollution permit. Citing the failure of the cement plant to use up-to-date pollution controls, we've asked the EPA to overturn CEMEX's permit and make the company use the best available pollution controls.

Under the Clean Air Act, any citizen has the right to petition the EPA to object to the issuance of an air pollution permit. The petition in this case is a formal request for the government to do something; in this case, make CEMEX follow the law. The EPA has to respond to our petition within 60 days. It's an unprecedented step; citizens have never before challenged CEMEX's air pollution permit.

Although we hope CEMEX comes to its senses and cleans up its act, we're not holding our breath. As we've learned time and time again, it takes vigilant citizen pressure to hold polluters accountable to clean air and our health.

We'll be keeping the pressure up until CEMEX is cleaned up once and for all.

No comments: