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Ohio EPA extends air quality permit for proposed chemical plant

June 23, 2020 / Beth Burger

A Thailand-based petrochemical company has received an extension from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency for for its air permit for a proposed ethane-ethylene cracker plant along the Ohio River in Belmont County. The extension exempts the company from having to do a new analysis to determine whether national air quality standards would be violated.

An air quality permit for a proposed multibillion-dollar petrochemical plant in eastern Ohio was set to expire Monday. But in a last-minute move, the Thailand-based operator requested and received an extension, citing challenges by environmental groups, the coronavirus pandemic and the U.S.-China trade war.

An air quality permit, which spans 18 months, is based on federal rules that allow a set amount of pollution to be emitted into the air without violating U.S. air quality standards. The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency tracks what the facility is anticipated to emit.