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SunCoke to defuse Ohio ire

MIDWEST-focused SunCoke Energy has reportedly offered a deal to officials in an Ohio community in an attempt to resolve longstanding legal opposition to an embattled coking operation.

Justin Niessner
SunCoke to defuse Ohio ire

SunCoke’s 100-oven coking coal plant in Ohio’s southwest Middleton area has conjured an intense backlash from the city of Monroe since the project was proposed in 2008.

Local media outlets have reported the coke producer’s settlement would result in the implementation of a number of new emission controls and dismissal of an appeal from the Ohio Environmental Review Appeals Commission.

The Middletown Journal cited a prepared statement from SunCoke spokesperson Anna Rozenich, reflecting an effort to close the four-year legal standoff.

“We are hopeful that we can work with the city of Monroe to address their concerns about our Middletown operations in a way that preserves jobs, maintains economic development and continues our long-standing tradition of environmental stewardship,” she was quoted as saying.

Approval of the company’s proposed settlement would progress a number of environmental measures as well as recoup $US1.15 million in legal fees for the community, according to the Ohio newspaper.

Environmental programs to be implemented as part of the agreement would include a $1 million dust control system, a 10-foot berm around stockpiles, tree plantings, emission reductions practices and air monitoring equipment for the plant.

In Q1 2012, SunCoke produced an estimated 37,000 tons more coke than in the same period of 2011 and said its total US cokemaking capacity utilization was 100% in Q1 2012, up from 95% in Q1 2011.

SunCoke’s facilities are located in Virginia, Indiana, Ohio, Illinois and Vitoria in Brazil.

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