PITTSBURGH Exide Technologies Ltd. was dealt a double blow after a California court and regulatory agency both ruled that it cannot resume operations at its Vernon, Calif., lead smelting facility until it gains compliance with new air rules.
The South Coast Air Quality Management Districts hearing board on April 8 denied the Milton, Ga.-based battery recyclers request for additional time to upgrade pollution controls at its facility. The agency issued a rule in January that required the company to achieve negative pressure at the facilitywhich means its pollution system must absorb any contaminants before they leak into the neighboring areaby April 10.
And Los Angeles Superior Court on April 7 denied Exides request for a preliminary injunction to block implementation of the new regulation (amm.com, Feb. 13).
Exide, which could not be reached for comment, said previously it was investing $5 million to upgrade the facility, bringing its total environmental and public health investments to more than $20 million since 2010 (amm.com, March 25).