BP Will Spend $400M To Reduce Pollution At Indiana Refinery

Chicago has long been a poster child for the fossil fuel industry’s negative effects on health and the environment. The Chicago metropolitan region still violates federal air quality standards for harmful ozone and particulate matter pollution, mostly due to the many coal-fired power plants in the area.

Now, BP, one of the worst offenders, has announced that it will spend $400 million to install new controls that will significantly reduce noxious air pollution from its massive refinery in northwest Indiana. Controls include a state-of-the-art system to reduce the flaring of refinery gas as well as additional controls and practices to lower emissions from process equipment throughout the refinery. In addition, BP says it will implement a refinery fence line monitoring system to provide air quality information to the local community. The results will be posted online weekly, providing those who live nearby with facts about how dirty their air actually is.

The announcement is part of a settlement with the government and environmental groups which accused BP of violating a 2001 legal deal over previous pollution problems and cited the company for repeatedly exceeding emissions limits on refinery flares that release harmful chemicals during frequent malfunctions. In addition to its agreement to install the preventative equipment, BP will also pay $8 million in fines resulting from these violations.

According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, Sierra Club, and other environmental organizations that participated in the agreement, BP’s investment should reduce harmful air pollution by about 4,000 tons annually at the plant. Those who worked on the agreement are hopeful that it will serve as an example for dealing with large refineries in other states.

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Image via Thinkstock


Reggie Thomas
Reggie Thomas5 years ago

BP should have been focus on that a long time ago,it should never have to take other organizations to say something to get people to make a move.(O_O)

John Mansky
John Mansky5 years ago

About time. Now for the rest...

Monica D.
Monica D5 years ago

Good. Now to reduce the fossil fuel use that requires such refineries to operate, and that produces CO2 as an end result.

Isabel A.
Isabel Araujo5 years ago

Are you sure that is enough? Thank you.

Dave C.
David C5 years ago

how about closing it and using the money to fund clean energy???

Jamie Clemons
Jamie Clemons5 years ago

400 million is chump change to them and they fight tooth and nail every inch of the way against cleaning up their act.

Christeen Anderson
Christeen A5 years ago

It's about time. Is that enough?

Jeffrey H.
Jeffrey H.5 years ago

That's $400 Million that isn't going into the CEO's pocket as a bonus so it really grinds his gears.

How many decades did it take?! 4 decades?!

11 years of deliberate violations of an agreement reached in 2001 resulted in a fine of only $8 Million -- that is only $730,000/yr. for the right to poison the planet's air, water, and soil for 11 years after fraudulently agreeing to not do that.

BP did that during times of record profits in the history of the world amounting to billions and billions of dollars/quarter -- $400 Million is a drop in the bucket, and $730,000/yr. for 11 years is a small cost of doing business.

How much money did they stuff in corrupt politicians' pockets to rig the system in their favor for all of those decades they openly flouted the clean air laws with impunity?!

Sarah Mumford
S M5 years ago

My golly! it just shows how much money they earn to pay this much $400million for one plant.

They must have done their maths that can afford after this example to do same in all - give in to one may have to give in on others thing. Why then are they not paying all dues to the Gulf?

Explains why they fighting so hard to stay in business of fossil fuel and not risk conversion to Renewables which a different business plan!

Catherine M.
Catherine Meek5 years ago

Too bad they didn't spend any money in actually cleaning up their oil spill.
They should have also been made to plant a million trees and build a plant for clean energy.