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EPA Gives Paper Mills a Pass, Enviros Say

SAN FRANCISCO (CN) - Three environmentalist groups say the Environmental Protection Agency has not reviewed standards at new and modified paper mills for more than 25 years, though the Clean Air Act requires review every 8 years.

The federal complaint focuses on kraft pulp mills, which convert wood into pulp, and "emit a host of pollutants into the air," including hydrogen sulfide, sulfur dioxide and carbon monoxide.

The Center for Biological Diversity, Greenpeace and Port Townshend Airwatchers want EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson ordered to review new source performance standards for new and modified kraft pulp mills.

"EPA has not reviewed these rules, designed to reduce harmful emissions from kraft pulp mills, for more than 25 years, even though the [Clean Air] Act requires the agency to conduct a review at least every eight years," the complaint states.

The environmentalists say the EPA regulates only emissions of particulates and total reduced sulfur, just two of the many pollutants produced by the pulp mills.

As a result, the EPA is not regulating the greenhouse gases emitted from the mills, the groups say.

The groups are represented by Helen Kang with the Golden Gate University School of Law's Environmental Law and Justice Clinic, and Vera Pardee, staff attorney with the Center for Biological Diversity.


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