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United States v. Mountain State Carbon LLC

ELR Citation: 44 ELR 20012
Nos. 5:12-CV-19, (N.D. W. Va., 01/14/2014) (Bailey, J.)

A district court held that "coke oven gas condensate" (COGC) is not a solid waste under RCRA. The case arose after the U.S. government filed suit against a coke production facility for RCRA and CAA violations. The government alleged that COGC at the facility displays the toxicity characteristic for benzene, which makes it a hazardous waste under RCRA. But the court held that COGC is not a solid waste because it is recycled, not discarded. However, whether some COGC is disposed as volatilized emissions during transfer remains an issue for trial. But even if COGC were a solid waste, the company's handling of COGC falls under RCRA's recycling exemption. The court therefore granted summary judgment in favor of the company on that claim. The court also granted in part and denied in part the government's motion for summary judgment on claims that the company exceeded air emission regulations and the facility’s operating permit in violation of the CAA.