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Shell’s Pennsylvania Plastics Plant: The Clean Air Saga Continues

Shell’s track record reads like a laundry list of environmental atrocities, complete with fines totalling over $10 million for exceeding pollution limits and casually dumping carcinogens into the Ohio River like it’s no big deal.

Posted by John Donovan: 28 March 2024

Shell Chemical Appalachia, the purveyor of pollution and champion of environmental negligence, is being dragged kicking and screaming into the realm of regulatory oversight. It’s about damn time!

For a whopping year and a half, Shell has been merrily chugging along under the guise of a construction permit, belching out more toxic fumes than a chimney on steroids. But fear not, concerned citizens, for the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has finally decided to slap them with a reality check—a shiny new air pollution permit, complete with all the bells and whistles of federal Clean Air Act laws. Hooray for accountability!

But wait, it gets better. You see, this isn’t just any run-of-the-mill permit. Oh no, Shell’s emissions are so off the charts that they’ve earned themselves the prestigious title of “major polluter” under the federal Clean Air Act. Bravo, Shell, bravo. It takes real talent to poison the air to such an extent that even the government takes notice.

Now, before you go thinking Shell’s getting off scot-free, rest assured, they’ve been given a stern deadline of June 21, 2024, to submit their permit application. And if you think they can just sweep their pollution problem under the rug, think again. The DEP has made it abundantly clear that there will be a public hearing and a 30-day comment period because apparently, the folks at Shell missed the memo that clean air is a basic human right, not a luxury.

Of course, health and environmental advocates are all too eager to weigh in on the matter, citing concerns about the plant’s blatant disregard for public health and safety. And who can blame them? Shell’s track record reads like a laundry list of environmental atrocities, complete with fines totalling over $10 million for exceeding pollution limits and casually dumping carcinogens into the Ohio River like it’s no big deal.

But fear not, dear readers, for the cavalry is on its way. Local advocacy groups like the Beaver County Marcellus Awareness Community are stepping up to the plate, demanding transparency and accountability every step of the way. Because when it comes to holding Shell accountable for their toxic tomfoolery, there’s no such thing as too much oversight.

So here’s to hoping that Shell finally gets its act together and cleans up its act—literally. Until then, we’ll be keeping a close eye on Beaver County, because when it comes to protecting our planet, there’s no room for shortcuts or excuses. Tick tock, Shell. The clock is ticking, and Mother Nature is not known for her patience.

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