HollyFrontier settles federal air pollution charges from refineries

HollyFrontier Corp. has agreed to implement a mitigation project at its refinery north of Salt Lake City and pay a $1.2-million fine to resolve federal allegations that it violated federal Clean Air Act regulations at the plant and two others it operates in Artesia, NM, and El Dorado, Kan., the US Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Justice jointly reported on Nov. 19.

EPA said the Houston refiner-marketer disclosed that the three plants produced about 42 million gal of gasoline that were introduced into Utah, Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, and Idaho markets that exceeded the applicable Reid Vapor Pressure standards. It estimated that the violations resulted in about 10 excess tons of volatile organic compound emissions.

A consent decree was lodged in US District Court for the District of Columbia on Nov. 19 under which HollyFrontier will install new equipment on two tanks at its Woods Cross refinery near Salt Lake City to reduce potentially toxic VOC emissions by about 96 tons over the settlement’s lifetime, EPA said.

EPA said the company will be required to use advanced pollutant detection technology during the implementation of the mitigation projects, and to hire a third party to verify its compliance status. Environmental benefits accruing as a result of these projects are anticipated to continue for many years due to the enduring nature of the projects.

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com.

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