(NYSE: CBT) confirmed that it has entered into a consent decree with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) in connection with the USEPA’s national enforcement initiative to control air emissions from industrial sources including carbon black manufacturing facilities. As a result of the consent decree, Cabot has agreed to reduce emissions of nitrogen oxide (NO
), sulfur dioxide (SO
) and particulate matter (PM) from its U.S. carbon black plants in Franklin and Ville Platte, La., and Pampa, Texas.
“Cabot has a long history of leadership in the carbon black industry. Consistent with this, we have been working proactively with the USEPA to implement advanced emissions reduction technologies,” said Patrick Prevost, Cabot president and chief executive officer. “Building on our strategic commitment to sustainability, we have come to an agreement with the USEPA on new air emission limits. This agreement will remove uncertainty and enable a more consistent approach to our manufacturing strategy. As the first party in our industry sector to come to an agreement with the USEPA, we also believe this will set the standard for the entire U.S. carbon black industry.”
As a part of the settlement, Cabot has committed to install advanced control technology and continuous emission monitoring systems. The control technologies will be installed and commissioned over a six and a half year time period at a cost of approximately $85 million. Cabot will be identifying means to recover the impact of this investment over time.
Although Cabot has not acknowledged any noncompliance, under the settlement agreement the company has agreed to a civil penalty payment of $975,000, all of which was previously accrued by the Company. Cabot has further agreed to invest approximately $450,000 toward environmental mitigation projects that will be focused on energy efficiency improvements in the communities where the three U.S. carbon black manufacturing plants are located.