Exide receives approval on cleanup plan in California

Battery recycler says it has spent the past seven months developing a plan that will reduce emissions and protect public health.

April 8, 2014
Recycling Today Staff
The battery recycling company Exide Technologies, based in Milton, Ga., has announced that the state of California’s South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) has approved an operational plan for Exide’s battery recycling plant in Vernon, Calif. The agency approved the plan on March 19, 2014.

Exide says it has been working with the SCAQMD for the past seven months to develop a plan that will reduce emissions and protect public health. (To view the approval letter, click here). The plan, known as a Risk Reduction Plan, includes significant operational improvements and capital investments to further reduce emissions, enhance compliance with the district’s existing air quality regulatory standards and help to ensure compliance with recently adopted air regulatory standards—specifically recently amended Rule 1420.1.

Exide adds that previously completed upgrades to the facility have already achieved a plant-wide 95 percent reduction of arsenic emissions, which has been maintained since April 2013.

Under the new plan, Exide plans to invest more than $5 million in the battery recycling facility, bringing its total environmental and public health investments in the Vernon facility to more than $20 million since 2010.

“Exide is steadfast in its commitment to meeting current and future emissions standards and is making necessary investments and improvements to do so,” says E.N. DeSart, senior director of commercial operations for Exide’s Recycling Group. “We are pleased to gain approval to move forward with the implementation of this comprehensive plan aimed at further reducing emissions, facilitating compliance and protecting public health. We believe implementation of this plan will help us pave a positive path forward for the Vernon plant.”

Implementation of the Risk Reduction Plan will be staged during 2014, contingent upon timely SCAQMD permit reviews and approvals. Exide has already submitted permit applications to SCAQMD for a number of the improvements within the new operating plan.

“Safety and public health protection are top priorities for Exide,” DeSart adds. “These planned changes and investments will allow Exide, through recycling, to continue playing a vital role in California’s green economy—providing good-paying local jobs and remaining in compliance with the district’s stringent regulations.”