The Latest: Coke plant: State shutdown move 'quite a shock'

The Latest: Coke plant: State shutdown move 'quite a shock'
The Latest: Coke plant: State shutdown move 'quite a shock'

ERIE, Pa. (AP) — The Latest on state environmental department moves to shut down coke plant (all times local):

4:15 p.m.

An official with a northwestern Pennsylvania coke plant says the move by state environmental regulators to shut it down came as "quite a shock."

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection said Monday it denied Erie Coke Corporation's operating permit renewal and had gone to Erie County Court seeking a shutdown, citing "years of numerous repetitive environmental violations."

Ed Nesselbeck, Erie Coke's environmental director, says the company had been working hard on a detailed compliance plan, which it submitted in April. He says "We've taken on herculean effort and thought we were making great progress."

The department said Erie Coke had been given many opportunities to address the violations, but the "frequency and severity" of the violations had only increased.

2:50 p.m.

State environmental regulators are moving to shut down a coke plant in northwestern Pennsylvania, citing "years of numerous repetitive environmental violations."

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection said Monday it has denied Erie Coke Corporation's application to renew its operating permit and filed a complaint in Erie County Court to shut down the plant.

The department said it had received "persistent complaints" from the community for more than a decade, but although Erie Coke had been given many opportunities to address the violations, the "frequency and severity" of the violations had only increased.

Ed Nesselbeck, Erie Coke Environmental Director, told the Erie Times-News that the company was reviewing the department's statement.

He told WICU-TV last week that environmental compliance "though challenging, will be doable" and asked for "cooperation and patience."

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