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Pollution board denies petcoke regulations

Published: Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014 4:53 p.m. CDT
(Charles Rex Arbogast)
FILE - In this Oct. 25, 2013 file photo, petroleum coke, or petcoke, is watered down where it is stored along the Calumet River on Chicago's southeast side. The Pollution Control Board is scheduled to meet Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014, in Chicago to consider Gov. Pat Quinn's proposed emergency regulations for petroleum coke. Quinn says he's responding to complaints from Chicago residents that petroleum coke piling up on the city's southeast side is a health and environmental threat. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast, File)

CHICAGO – An Illinois pollution panel has denied emergency regulations to control piles of petroleum coke.

The Pollution Control Board made the decision Thursday regarding statewide regulations proposed by Gov. Pat Quinn. The board’s decision means the rules will go through the longer, regular rule-making process.

Quinn says he’s responding to complaints from Chicago residents that petroleum coke piling up on the city’s Southeast Side is a health and environmental threat.

Petcoke is a powdery fuel made by “cooking” residue left over after making gasoline and diesel. Quinn wants to require storage terminals to immediately install dust-suppression systems and prevent storm water runoff. He also wants companies to fully enclose the piles within two years.

Industry officials say the rules would hurt Illinois businesses, and there’s no need for emergency action.

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