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Allegheny County Health Department Publishes Long-Awaited Draft Title V Permit for Synthomer (Formerly Eastman Chemical)

We have blogged about the much-delayed and long-awaited Title V Operating Permit for the Jefferson Hills chemical-manufacturing facility operated by Synthomer, Inc., and formerly operated by Eastman Chemical Company many times before.

Why all the fuss? 

It’s because Synthomer is one of two major sources in Allegheny County that still has never been issued a Title V Operating Permit, despite ACHD regulations that provide that such a permit should have been issued by the end of 2003 (the other is ATI Brackenridge Works).

To catch up briefly: Once upon a time, a LONG time ago, the facility was caught violating numerous air pollution regulations, and subjected to a December 2011 consent order in federal court that required it to do:

  • comprehensive emissions testing on all of its sources of air pollution

  • submit the results of that testing to the Allegheny County Health Department and the EPA for review

  • apply to ACHD for an installation permit for each source after receiving EPA approval of the test results

  • and – once all sources were under installation permits - apply for a Title V operating permit.  

“We are pleased to report that the long, long delay is coming to an end – the light at the end of the tunnel has finally come into view,” GASP Senior Attorney John Baillie said. “On March 14, 2024, ACHD published a draft Title V Operating Permit for Synthomer’s Facility and made it available for public comment.”

ACHD also scheduled a public hearing on the draft Title V Operating Permit for 6 p.m. April 18 at the Elizabeth Event Center.  

Editor’s Note: Our review of the 149-page-long draft Title V Operating Permit has just begun. - but no worries: We will provide updates on anything interesting we find in the permit as we review it.

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