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CVR Energy to pay $23 MM for excess pollution from Kansas (U.S.) refinery

(Reuters) - CVR Energy has agreed to pay more than $23 MM for emitting excess sulfur dioxide (SO2) from its petroleum refinery in Coffeyville, Kansas, in a settlement announced by the U.S. Justice Department and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Monday.

Under an agreed upon consent decree, CVR's Coffeyville Resources Refining and Marketing unit (CRRM) must install a $9-MM flare gas recovery system, spend $1 MM on a Kansas-approved environment-friendly project, and pay more than $13 MM in fines.

The new flare gas recovery system will lower annual greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 12,888 t, equivalent to using 1.3 MM fewer gallons of gasoline every year, and will also cut SO2 and nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions, the EPA projected.

The refinery emitted 2,300 excess tons of SO2, which can make breathing difficult, cause acid rain, and damage trees and plants. NOx primarily contributes to smog formation.

After paying a nearly $1-MM penalty as part of a consent decree in 2012 for environmental violations, CRRM had been under investigation by the United States and Kansas since 2016 for additional Clean Air Act violations, leading to Monday's settlement.

(Reporting by Daksh Grover and Deep Vakil in Bengaluru; Editing by Bill Berkrot)


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