Detroit Waste Incineration Facility Air Pollution Abatement

Date: October 20th, 2014

Topic: Air Pollution, Environmental Justice

Type: Lawsuit vs. Private Actors

Jurisdiction: Michigan

Summary: Michigan Waste Energy, Inc. and Detroit Renewable Power LLC operate America’s largest waste incineration facility, located in Midtown Detroit. Every summer the state receives many complaints from local residents of the severe odor coming from the facility. Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality conducted an investigation and found that the facility was violating Rule 901 of Michigan’s Air Pollution Control Rules by emitting the foul odor. They subsequently filed an enforcement action against Michigan Waste Energy and Detroit Renewable Power. The two companies have since entered into a settlement agreement with the state whereby they will pay $350,000 in penalties for past violations and reengineer their air ducting system to eliminate the smell within two years.

Citation: Michigan Department of Environmental Quality v. Michigan Waste Energy, Inc. and Detroit Renewable Power, LLC, No 1184CE (Mich. Cir. 2014)

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