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Air Quaility Mapping for Middletown Coke


Following is a link to the Southwest Ohio Air Agency website:


The PM2.5 and SO2 data for the Amanda, Yankee and new Made monitors can be obtained by selecting on the “Concentration Chart” and selecting PM2.5 or SO2. Made is only an SO2 monitor. For those of you interested in knowing our air quality in real time, you can check it on this site.

USEPA Settlement Agreement with SunCoke due to Violations

The USEPA and SunCoke have arrived at a settlement agreement due to the multiple violations that occurred at their Haverhill facility.

Here is the link to the press release from USEPA, which explains that the Middletown facility will be required to install a backup HRSG if certain emissions limits are not met:




One of the claims that the NRDC raised with the Middletown Coke permit in our ERAC appeal is that Ohio EPA should have required SunCoke to install a backup HRSG in its initial permit to install (in order to prevent the kind of pollution that US EPA is concerned about here).

SunCoke Energy Middletown Operations Issued Another Notice of Violation on February 29, 2012

Attached is another Notice of Violation issued on February 29, 2012.  This the fourth malfunction or NOV that has occurred since SunCoke began operation on October 30, 2011 - Five in four months!

SunCoke Energy Middletown Operations Exceeds S02 Limits on March 2-3, 2012

The National Ambient Air Quality Standard for Sulfur Dioxide is 75 parts per billion averaged hourly. The concentrations documented on the EPA website are high one hour averages. Units are parts per billion.  SunCoke Exceeded the limits on March 2nd and 3rd - limits were 156 and 133 for those days. 


SunCoke Energy Middletown Operations Issued Notice of Violation on January 24, 2012

Attached is the Notice of Violation issued to SunCoke Energy Middletown Operations.  The Violation resulted from a Compliance Specialist from the Southwest Ohio Air Quality Agency driving past SunCoke on January 23rd and observing fugitive dust emissions rising from the coke conveyor where the coke exists the transfer tower immediately west of Yankee Road.

SunCoke Incident Under Investigation

Since SunCoke's start-up, noise and light pollution concerns and odor complaints have been made on multiple occasions. SunCoke has now had their first formal EPA investigation following an incident on Thursday, Dec. 1, 2011, in which residents issued complaints to the EPA regarding particulate matter falling on their property.

Mike Ploetz’s statement in the Journal today is in need of correction. The EPA hasn’t confirmed it is fly ash. Although it may be true that fly ash isn’t “hazardous” – that is a legal term that applies to particular kinds of solid waste and is not typically applied to fly ash - it is well documented that fly ash (like other forms of coal ash) is typically toxic and contains various heavy metals that can be harmful to human health. I’ve formally requested that that EPA office issue a statement to the Journal correcting this inaccurate information printed today. The public has now been led to believe by the EPA that there are no potential health risks with what has occurred, which is inaccurate.

Here is the link to the story:


Below is a link to a report from the organization Physicians for Social Responsibility that talks about the health risks from coal ash. Much of this report is focused on the potential problems with coal ash landfills, which isn’t the issue here, but this report does contain a good description of the possible contents of fly ash and why it might be unsafe.


More info on fly ash:

Is Fly Ash Toxic?

SunCoke's Middletown Operations Submits Permit Modification to OEPA - So much for "totally" enclosed conveyor belts!

On Sept. 22nd, SunCoke Energy's Middletown Operations submitted a Permit Modification request to clarify their "intent."  Seems all of the discussion over the years of "totally" enclosed conveyor belts are really just conveyor "covers" after all.  SunCoke is requesting that any reference to "total" or "totally" be stricken from the permit in regards to the enclosing of the conveyor belts. 

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