Sunday, November 20, 2016
TDEC Approves USN Permit Extensions
By Walter F. Roche Jr.
Tennessee environmental officials have approved a series of construction permit extensions for the $200 million US Nitrogen manufacturing plant as the company continues efforts to get the facility in operation.
Records of the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation show seven construction permits for various segments of the ammonium nitrate manufacturing have been extended to Dec. 31, 2017, a one year extension.
US Nitrogen had submitted the extension requests in October. The extensions are dated Nov. 8.
Separately the Midway, Tenn. company reported that it pumped a little over 5 million gallons from the Nolichucky River in the month of October. It discharged about 1.36 million gallons back into the river.
The withdrawals came on five days in the middle of the month and a single withdrawal on Oct. 27. Discharges came on Oct. 14 and Oct. 15.
The construction permit extensions include the nitric acid plant, the ammonia plant, the steam boiler, a gasoline dispensing facility and cooling towers.
The ammonia plant extension includes changes sought by US Nitrogen to set limits on the number of burners that can be operated before a selective catalytic converter is in full operation.
All the extensions include a requirement that US Nitrogen apply for a major operating permit no later than June 19 of next year.
US Nitrogen requested the extensions following an August incident in which a planned startup had to be aborted after a huge orange cloud appeared over the facility, producing excess emissions of nitrogen gases.