NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) - New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Joe Martens announced an amended settlement Tuesday with Lafarge North America to set annual limits on allowable pollution emissions.

The settlement, which amends a 2010 consent decree with the Environmental Protection Agency, New York and 11 other states, requires that Lafarge set annual limits on allowable emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides at its Ravena plant that are at or below limits contained in the original agreement. The agreement also requires that Lafarge pay $1.5 million to fund projects to further reduce pollution emissions at the plant and in nearby communities.

A separate agreement between Lafarge and New York limits mercury emissions to 25 percent lower levels than the plant's current air pollution control permit.

In exchange for the lower emission levels, the revised agreement extends a deadline by 18 months for Lafarge to build a new kiln with advanced air pollution controls. The original deadline ofJanuary 1, 2015, will be extended to July 1, 2016, as part of the amendment.

"This settlement will improve the air in Ravena and the surrounding area, while helping to ensure jobs stay in the community," Schneiderman said. "My office will work to ensure Lafarge complies fully with this settlement, meets its obligations to modernize the Ravena operations, and continues to advance air quality in the Ravena area."

The 2010 consent decree required that Lafarge limit pollutant emissions from its 13 plants around the nation.

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New York Attorney General U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

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