The US Department of Justice and the Environmental Protection Agency have announced a multi-state Clean Air Act settlement with agribusiness giant Cargill, which they say will result in a reduction of approximately 30,000 tons of pollution a year and set new standards for limiting harmful emissions from specialty oilseed plants.
The government’s complaint, filed in federal district court in Minnesota, alleges that Cargill had significantly underestimated emissions from its operations in 13 states. Under the settlement, Cargill is required to install air pollution control devices at its 27 corn and oilseed processing facilities and is expected to spend an estimated $130m to meet the requirements of the consent decree. Cargill will also pay a civil penalty of $1.6m and spend $3.5m on environmental projects across the country.
“All Americans benefit when large corporations agree to bring their facilities into compliance with our nation’s environmental laws,” said acting assistant attorney general Kelly A. Johnson, of the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division. “Today’s settlement is positive proof of the continued progress we are achieving with the grain industry, through the cooperative enforcement efforts of federal, state, and local agencies.”