Detroit Renewable Power’s downtown incinerator, one of the nation’s largest trash incinerators, had emitted harmful air pollutants into surrounding neighborhoods for decades. Local community groups had been fighting for years to address the noise, odors, and health impacts of this facility when NELC served a Notice of Intent to Sue on behalf of Environment Michigan and the Ecology Center.
Our 2018 notice described over 600 violations of federal hourly limits on carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide, including instances where carbon monoxide levels were more than four times the legal limit. Within months, Detroit Renewable Power stunned the city by announcing it would permanently close the incinerator. The increasing public pressure, state agency enforcement of odor rules, and the threat of our citizen enforcement suit all factored into the company’s decision to shut down.