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Carolinas Cement wins latest court battle over air permit

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World Cement,

A judge in North Carolina has ruled in favour of Carolinas Cement Company and the North Carolina Division of Air Quality (DAQ) this week in a court case brought by environmental groups. The prosecution, acting on behalf of the N.C. Coastal Federation, Cape Fear River Watch, PenderWatch & Conservancy and the Sierra Club, challenged the DAQ’s decision to issue a permit to Titan Cement for the proposed plant in Castle Hayne. However, the judge decided that the air permit did not ‘substantially prejudice the petitioners’ rights’, as claimed.

Bob Odom, Carolina Cement Company’s general manager, said: “The state’s handling of the air permitting process was comprehensive, transparent and exhaustive in its attention to detail. It may well be the most carefully examined permit application ever issued by North Carolina.”

The new Carolina Cement Company plant, which is a subsidiary of Titan America, has been under discussion for a number of years now, but has met great resistance from local environmental groups. The ruling this week is by no means the final hurdle to overcome, as the case will now be passed to the N.C.

Environmental Management Commission. The petitioners claim that the judge has not addressed the issue of the environmental damage the complainants claim the plant will have on the surrounding community. A second lawsuit from the same group of petitioners challenges the recent revision to the air permit, which gives Titan more time to begin construction of the plant and brings emissions limits in line with the latest EPA regulations.

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