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EPA cites Barron County, Wis., waste-to-energy facility

Release Date: 09/08/2008
Contact Information: William Omohundro, 312-353-8254, omohundro.william@epa.gov

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. 08-OPA139

CHICAGO (Sept. 8, 2008) - U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 has filed an administrative complaint against the Barron County Waste-to-Energy Facility, 575 10 1/2 Ave., Almena, Wis., for alleged Clean Air Act violations. EPA proposed a $42,553 penalty.

EPA alleges that the Barron County facility failed to comply with the mercury emission limit specified in its state operating permit and the federal plan for small municipal waste combustors.

EPA notified the facility of the alleged violations in March 2008 after receiving the results of stack tests conducted in 2006. EPA said the Barron County facility operates two incinerators capable of burning 40 tons of municipal solid waste per day.

The Barron County plant has 30 days from receipt of the complaint to file an answer and request a hearing. It may request an informal conference with EPA at any time to discuss resolving the allegations.

Exposure to mercury can permanently damage the brain and kidneys. Adults exposed to metallic mercury vapor may develop tremors, memory loss and kidney disease.

Information about EPA Region 5's air enforcement program is at http://www.epa.gov/region5/air/enforce/ . Potential environmental violations may be reported at http://www.epa.gov/compliance/complaints/

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