Bennet Welcomes EPA Comments On Clean Air Act Permit Renewal For Suncor Refinery Outside Denver

Bennet Asked the Agency to Carefully Review Suncor’s Operating Permit Renewal Earlier This Month

Denver – Today, Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet released the statement below after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) outlined objections to a portion of the Clean Air Act (CAA) Title V air permit renewal for the Suncor Refinery Plant 2 in Commerce City, Colorado as well as recommendations for the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) relating to community engagement, documentation actions, and demonstration of attainment of air quality standards:

“More must be done to protect the health and well-being of the vulnerable communities that surround the Suncor facility outside Denver. I am grateful to EPA for turning its attention toward this important matter and for looking into ways to better protect our communities from dangerous air pollution. Every family in Colorado deserves access to clean air and clean water.”

This follows a letter Bennet sent to EPA earlier this month requesting that the agency review the permit carefully, explore opportunities to strengthen pollution protections, and identify additional resources or tools to help ensure Suncor’s compliance with permits and pollution regulations. The letter notes that the Suncor Refinery has a well-documented multi-year history of non-compliance with emissions limits, which is particularly concerning given its proximity to the neighborhoods of Commerce City and North Denver – home to many low income and minority families. 

EPA’s comments can be found here. According to EPA, CDPHE will have 90 days to revise affected sections of the permit and/or permit record, provide opportunity for public review and comment, and submit a new proposed permit to EPA for review.