Shell Receives Air Quality Permit from PA DEP for Cracker Plant

Finally, after months and months of waiting, the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) has granted an air quality permit that allows Shell to operate a proposed ethane cracker plant in Monaca (Beaver County), PA. MDN told you the DEP signaled they would approve the air quality permit back in March (see PA DEP Signals Approval for Shell Ethane Cracker Air Quality Plan). Three months later the DEP finally issued the permit–no small miracle given the agency is now run by PennFuture DEP Sec. John Quigley. Shell had stated getting the permit would be a “critical” step in the process to moving forward. Now that they have the permit, what kinds of encouraging words do we have from Shell? The permit “does not mean we have made a final decision to build the project.” Which is the same standard line they’ve delivered since 2011 when this whole process began (see Shell Commits to Building a Billion Dollar Chemical Plant in the Marcellus Region of U.S.). Four years of being teased with this project has led us to think we’ve contracted post traumatic cracker disorder (PTCD)…

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