Central Specialties, Inc., exceeds air emission limits at its Alexandria asphalt facility

Stephen Mikkelson, 218-316-3887

According to a Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) enforcement investigation, Central Specialties, Inc. of Alexandria, failed to properly calculate air pollutants, exceeded air pollutant emissions, submitted late semiannual and annual reports, and failed to keep various required records. The violations are associated with the company’s three portable hot mix asphalt plants and nonmetallic mineral processing equipment.

Among the pollutants the company improperly calculated for monthly and annual emissions, dating back to 2012, are:

  • Carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e).
  • Carbon monoxide (CO).
  • Nitrogen oxide (NOx).
  • Total, small and very small particulate matter (Total PM, PM10, PM2.5).
  • Sulfur dioxide (SO2).
  • Volatile organic compounds (VOC).

In addition to paying a $22,750 civil penalty to the MPCA, Central Specialties must develop and submit plans to properly:

  • Calculate monthly and annual pollutant emissions.
  • Submit required semiannual and annual reports on time.
  • Perform regular emission stack tests.
  • Record daily fuel usage.
  • Notify the MPCA when changing location of portable equipment.

MPCA rules and regulations are designed to protect human health and the environment by limiting pollution emissions and discharges from facilities. When companies do not fully comply with regulatory requirements, the resulting pollution can be harmful to people and the environment.

When calculating penalties, the MPCA takes into account how seriously the violations affected or could have affected the environment, and whether they were first-time or repeat violations. The agency also attempts to recover the economic benefit the company gained by failing to comply with environmental laws in a timely manner.