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First Toxic Air Pollutant Risk Standards Strengthen Coke Oven Controls

Release Date: 04/01/2005
Contact Information:

Contact: John Millett, 202-564-7842 /

(04/01/05) On Thursday, March 31, EPA issued the first in a series of emissions reductions requirements known as residual risk standards, requiring further reductions in emissions of toxic air pollutants from coke ovens. EPA amended maximum achievable control technology (MACT) standards for coke ovens to include more stringent requirements to address health risks remaining after implementing EPA’s October 1993 air toxics emission standards.

These final amendments also include requirements for new or reconstructed coke oven batteries that reflect improvements in emission control practices that have occurred in the years since the 1993 standard. These standards will reduce health risks remaining after a category of industrial sources has fully implemented technology-based emissions standards for toxic air pollutants.

Coke ovens convert coal to a higher carbon-content fuel called coke which is burned to produce iron at steel mills and foundries. These standards apply to coke oven emissions from nine batteries of coke ovens at five coke plants throughout the country. In 1993, EPA issued technology-based emissions standards for these batteries requiring them to utilize MACT to reduce toxic air emissions. Since 1990, EPA has issued 96 MACT regulations that require 174 industry source categories to eliminate 1.5 million tons per year of 188 toxic air pollutants.

Most existing facilities are reducing emissions beyond the limits required by the 1993 regulation. The final amendments will further reduce risks to public health by requiring the current level of emissions control to be maintained.

To read a copy of the rule and a fact sheet summarizing the action, visit: .