NEW YORK The
Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality will hold a
hearing July 30 to consider issuing an air permit to Big River
Steel LLC, one of the final major hurdles before construction
of its proposed $1.1-billion steel mill.
The hearing will allow
the general public to make comments concerning construction of
the mill in Osceola, Ark., according to Clif Chitwood,
Mississippi County economic developer, after which the state
agency will review alongside the operating air permit documents
from the company.
"Its just an
opportunity for the public to make any comments that they would
like to," Chitwood told AMM. "As with any public
meeting, you have no idea what will actually happen. But, I
expect an air permit to be issued pretty quickly, because
obviously, were moving closer and closer towards
financial closing. I would expect it by September."
Chitwood said that
funds must be received from the "handful" of investors for the
project in November, and immediately afterwards, the county
will purchase property for the mill and begin construction
amm.com, April 19).
A draft of Big River
Steels air permit application shows that the company has
plans to build two electric-arc furnaces, as well as ladle
metallurgical furnaces, a RH degasser and boiler, and casters.
The facility will also have a pickling line, galvanizing lines,
annealing furnaces, a decarburizing line, a reversing cold
mill, an annealing pickling line and an annealing coating line,
Big River Steel, led by industry veteran John D. Correnti,
aims to supply steel sheet to the oil and gas, automotive and
electrical industries. The proposed mill, which is set for
groundbreaking in November, has been overwhelmingly supported
by local legislators because of the promise of new and high
paying jobs. Others, though, have opposed the mill on grounds
that there is already too much capacity in the U.S. sheet steel
amm.com, March 18).