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Flint Hills to pay $850,000 for chemical release

Attorney General reaches settlement with Peru facility

Flints Hills Resources in Peru will pay a penalty of $850,000 after reaching a consent order with the Illinois Attorney General’s Office over a chemical release.
Flints Hills Resources in Peru will pay a penalty of $850,000 after reaching a consent order with the Illinois Attorney General’s Office over a chemical release.

A local manufacturer will pay a penalty of $850,000 stemming from a pollution incident in 2014.

Friday, Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul announced his office reached a consent order with chemical manufacturer Flint Hills Resources in Peru that addresses a lawsuit filed in May 2014 by then Attorney General Lisa Madigan. The lawsuit was filed after chemicals were released into the air and threatened the nearby Illinois River, according to a press release from the Attorney General’s Office. The consent order required Flint Hills to pay $850,000 and comply with all state environmental laws and permit requirements.

“This consent order will ensure that Flint Hills is held accountable for any future violations of state law,” Raoul said. “My office will work diligently to protect Illinois residents from contamination that threatens public health and the environment.”

A system malfunction at the Peru facility caused 56,000 pounds of styrene, a hazardous air pollutant, to be released into the air. And about 2,000 pounds of liquid styrene was dumped onto the ground, threatening the Illinois River.

“After conducting internal reviews of its facility, Flint Hills reported several violations of state permit and reporting requirements,” the Attorney General’s Office said.

Flint Hills is also required to audit its program for detecting and repairing leaking valves and pipes. The company, a subsidiary of Koch Industries, Inc., produces polystyrene beads used for packaging materials.

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