Julie Domike in E&E News on EPA Actions on Carbon Black Producers

03/27/2018

E&E News’ Greenwire quoted Haynes and Boone, LLP Partner Julie Domike in an article about the Environmental Protection Agency’s differing treatment of manufacturers whose plants require new air pollution controls to reduce their production of carbon black.

E&E News reported that the EPA had cracked down on three companies in December 2017 but now wants to give two others several years longer to clean up than was mandated in earlier settlements with the government.

According to the report, Boston-based Cabot Corp., a specialty chemicals maker, settled with the EPA in 2013, but regulators approved a new agreement because the company faces higher-than-anticipated cleanup costs. Meanwhile, Houston-based Continental Carbon’s 2015 consent decree called for new soot scrubbers to be in place by March 2019 but could be delayed until October 2021.

E&E News reported that a half-dozen former EPA enforcement officials interviewed by the news service could not name an exact precedent for what the government now wants to do.

"I don't know of any [consent decrees] that have been adjusted based on the later settlers getting a better deal," said Julie Domike, a former air enforcement branch chief who is now a partner at the law firm Haynes and Boone, LLP. When petroleum refineries tried a similar gambit more than a decade ago, Domike said, EPA turned them down. ...

Excerpted from E&E News. To read the full article, click here.

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