CLAYPOOL — Residents who live near a soybean processing plant near Claypool have about two more weeks remaining in order to weigh in on a request the company has made to the state regarding its factory’s emissions.
A legal ad appeared in a local newspaper Dec. 15, stating that a 30-day public comment period would commence regarding an air permit for Louis Dreyfus Company Agriculture Industries, LLC, located at 7344 S. SR 15 in Claypool.
According to documents from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management, the soybean processing facility is requesting significant modifications to its Part 70 Operating Permit. The modifications would, according to the document, establish a Best Available Control Technology limit for the facility’s biodiesel manufacturing operating, which uses soybean oil to produce a biodiesel fuel.
“Under the requirements of BACT, if the unreduced Volatile Organic Compound emissions from the biodiesel production facilities can exceed 25 tons per year, they are required to use control technology to reduce emissions,” said Sarah Bonick, director of external relations with IDEM. “The level of control and reduction is determined by conducting a BACT analysis. The results are then incorporated into the permit as limitations.”
Bonick added that the government requires such facilities to monitor the amount of pollutants they release into the air.
“The biodiesel production facilities are currently required to control and reduce emissions under other regulations and are currently limited to 22.02 tons of VOC per year,” said said. “These existing limitations meet the requirements of BACT. Therefore, the VOC emissions from the biodiesel production will not increase.
The modifications would also clarify the applicability of National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants for the facility’s existing gas turbine.
According to the draft permit, Louis Dreyfus’ gas turbine was initially built in 1999 in New Jersey and was hauled to the Claypool site in 2016. Because of the year it was built, the unit is classified as an existing stationary combustion turbine under the NESHAP rules.
IDEM documents stated that “these corrections, changes and removals may include Title I changes, (e.g., changes that add or modify synthetic minor emission limits).”
Louis Dreyfus Commercial Manager Jeremy Mullins was contacted on Dec. 27, but stated he would refer all questions to “the people that handle that.” No one else from the company has answered media correspondence.
Residents who wish to comment on the issue are asked to contact Daniel W. Pell, IDEM, Office of Air Quality, 100 N. Senate Ave., MC 61-53 IGCN 1003, Indianapolis, IN 46204-2251.
Pell can also be reached by telephone at (800) 451-6027 or (317) 234-8532.
A copy of the permit application and IDEM’s preliminary findings are available at the Warsaw Community Public Library, 310 E. Main St., Warsaw, or online.