Appeals court rejects challenge on cement plants

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Associated Press

Posted on April 18, 2014 at 11:35 AM

Updated Friday, Apr 18 at 3:01 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal appeals court has turned aside a challenge by environmental groups to an air pollution standard for cement plants.

In a 3-0 decision, the appeals court said the emissions-related provisions of the Environmental Protection Agency standard are permissible.

The Natural Resources Defense Council and other environmental groups had argued that the standard weakened an earlier EPA rule for cement plants that the industry had successfully challenged. The appeals court found the earlier rule from 2010 to be arbitrary and capricious and returned it to the EPA for redrafting, resulting in the latest decision.

On Friday, the appeals court sided with environmental groups on one issue. It ruled that cement companies being sued over pollution cannot claim as a defense that an unavoidable malfunction resulted in impermissible levels of emissions.

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