Ash Grove Seeks Permit Modification
Ash Grove Cement Co. could increase production while cutting pollution under a preliminary decision by the state to modify its air quality permit, according to the Independent Record. The Montana Department of Environmental Quality is accepting public comment on its preliminary decision to grant Ash Grove a change to its existing permit. The modified permit includes possible modernization of the facility in the form of a new, more energy-efficient kiln and construction of an overland conveyor for transporting raw materials from a quarry. The conveyor would reduce truck traffic through Montana City.
Cement production and storage capabilities would also expand along with a drop in emissions with a new permit. After an air quality and impact analysis, DEQ determined that modifications to the plant will require the best available control technology to minimize emissions and to comply with the Clean Air Act. DEQ projects a decrease in emissions of sulfur dioxide and other contaminants under the proposed permit, said DEQ environmental engineer Craig Henrikson. The plant opened in 1964 and currently employs about 80 people with a payroll of more than $4.5 million.
Luck Stone Fights for Virginia Permit
The Dinwiddie County, Va., Planning Commission voted 6-1 to recommend denial of a proposed quarry on Frontage Road that has been opposed by scores of residents.
Planning Commission members said they were recommending that the Board of Supervisors reject Luck Stone’s conditional use permit because the proposal would have a negative impact on the quality of life, according to the Progress-Index.
More than 100 people gathered at a county high school recently for a special Planning Commission meeting on the quarry project. Protesters with Residents for a Better Dinwiddie passed out stickers and fliers in opposition of Luck Stone. The company wants to build a 360-acre quarry to extract a mineral known as Petersburg granite.
Greenfield Quarry in Vermont Faces Opposition
Most of the residents attending a recent Halifax, Vt., town meeting were there to discuss a proposed quarry operation on 1,200 acres owned by Russell Denison. In particular, residents were focused on a proposed traffic study, according to the Deerfield Valley News. Board member Edee Edwards said she has been advised to call District 2 Environmental Commission Coordinator April Hensel to discuss the town’s concerns and ask if the study is warranted, and to confirm whether the town must pay for it or if the cost must be borne by the applicant. Resident Sue Kelly asked what specific concerns would be discussed with Hensel. Traffic, damage to the road, and responsibility for the cost, replied board member Earl Holtz. Dust, noise, culverts, the absence of guard rails, road width, and the suspension of shipments during mud season, added Edwards.
A wide-ranging discussion revealed that the status of some roads is confused and that legal definitions distinguishing class 4 roads from trails are vague. The latter may be up to individual towns to define. Resident Lynda Copeland asked if the number of truck deliveries can be restricted, and was told that the district environmental commission can and does impose such conditions as part of the Act 250 permitting process.
Lafarge Seeks State Permit in New York
Representatives of Lafarge North America said they will seek a state permit and a town rezoning for a new stone and gravel quarry in Lockport, N.Y., once the town completes its new comprehensive plan. The company’s attorney said after a public meeting on the plan that either the town or the state Department of Environmental Conservation could stop the plan to dig a new quarry on the south side of Hinman Road, where Lafarge has purchased most of the property.
Perry Galdenzi, Western New York area manager, said Lafarge estimates it has five years’ worth of usable material left in its existing quarry, assuming it receives state approval and a special-use permit to mine on a parcel of land within the borders of the city, a project proposed last winter.