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Site-wide approval for Chemtura passes peer review

Gail Martin, Independent Editor

A consultant hired to review Chemtura’s plan for a site wide environmental compliance approval has signed off on all outstanding concerns.

Greg Conley, of RWDI , told members of the Chemtura Public Advisory Committee that the initial concerns his firm raised about the application have all been resolved.

Conley made his presentation at the monthly meeting of CPAC, held on May 31.

A site-wide environmental compliance approval (ECA) replaces the Ministry of Environment’s prior system of certificates of approval. Under the previous system, companies would have to apply for multiple certificates to cover the various systems operating on their property. Under a site-wide approval, the ECA would govern the entire property, making for a more efficient oversight process.

Conley told CPAC members that his firm had several initial concerns, when reviewing Chemtura’s application.

They noted that the application contained no reference at all to odour emissions, something that should be considered for any ECA application. As well, some previous products that had been listed in individual certificates of approval had not been carried forward.

However, they discovered that Chemtura has a unique protocol for dealing with odour emissions, filing a separate report to the Ministry of the Environment.

This odour protocol was developed in 1999, in response to odour problems at the company, which plagued the town of Elmira for several years.

Conley said the other concern, about chemicals from previous certificates not being included in the new ECA, was really a housekeeping measure. It turns out that Chemtura no longer produces these products, so there was no need to carry them forward.

Conley noted that while RWDI has no more outstanding concerns, it will still be up to the Ministry of the Environment to issue final approval on the ECA.

Jeff Merriman, of Chemtura, told members of CPAC that it was his understanding that the MOE was looking for an official comment from CPAC, before completing its review of the application.

CPAC members deferred making a decision on the application, opting to have more time to review RWDI’s report.

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