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Air Case Now With 11th Circuit Court

 

   The GECís reply to the U.S. EPA, and intervenors Georgia EPD and Hercules briefs, was filed on August 24th in the 11th Circuit Court.  GEC has requested oral arguments in the case and expects a court decision within the next two months.

   On June 14, 2005, GEC filed its initial brief in the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals case against the U.S. EPA.  Since the Hercules, Inc. Title V operating permit (under the Clean Air Act) was issued, the GEC has argued to the state EPD, to the U.S. EPA, and now to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, that the permit was invalid because it did not include emission limitations for all applicable air quality requirements.  Specifically, the Georgia rules state that no polluter shall emit air pollution at levels that, alone or in combination with other sources or other air contaminants, threatens human health.  With Georgia Pacific just a few miles away, and more than 7 public schools between it and Hercules, GEC believes the emission levels of the two plants threaten human health.  The U.S. EPA accepted and relied on the Georgia EPD's and Hercules' position that the rule actually isn't an "emission limitation," but only a "general goal."  GEC argues that even though no numeric limitations are set in the rule, it remains an "emission limitation" and an enforceable permit limit must be placed in the permit to comply with the rule limitation.    

 

 
     

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