In 2007 Madison-Kipp completed a project to install tall stacks to disperse its air pollution. Short roof vents barely higher than surrounding homes were eliminated and 12 new stacks were installed. This project was required by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to finally correct violations of air quality standards in the residential areas adjacent to Kipp's aluminum foundry. The taller stacks reduced the metallic and waxy smells that for many, many years had permeated the surrounding neighborhood.
See the accompanying photo of Kipp
which shows the new stacks and nearby homes.
The DNR had finally concluded that Kipp had been violating
air quality standards, exposing neighborhood residents to
unhealthly levels of air pollution. After this major project,
no one at Kipp, the city health department or the DNR
acknowledged to residents that the company and agencies had
been wrong for so many years, and had failed miserably to
address the hundreds
of complaints from surrounding residents.
Despite many years of violations, no fines were leveled
against Kipp and no company officials including its owner,
Reed Coleman, were convicted. DNR staff first identified air
standard violations near Kipp in 1994 but did nothing to
correct them. How long these violations had been occurring is
anyone's guess. Wisconsin law allows a maximum fine of $25,000
per day for violation of environmental laws. If held
accountable, Kipp would be subject to over $118 million in
fines.Instead the company pocketed the savings on air
pollution control, while the surrounding neighborhood paid the
cost in public health.
The story doesn't end there. During the many years neighbors
waited for the air quality violations to be corrected, USEPA
updated the national ambient air quality standards using new
research on air pollution and health. The old and outdated
1971 standard of150 ug/m3 was used to design the new Kipp
stacks. In 2006 USEPA replaced it with a more protective standard of 35 ug/m3
for small particles or PM2.5. While Kipp had finally made
improvements to comply with the old 1971 air quality standard,
it is already in violation of the newest 2006 standard - an
example of the old adage, "A day late and a dollar short."
To determine the height of the stacks needed to disperse
Kipp's emissions, the DNR conducted a computer dispersion
modeling analysis. Like operating 1000's of air quality
monitors, this modeling analysis simulated the spread of
Kipp's emissions throughout the neighborhood and predicted
concentrations at surrounding homes and backyards. CAM
obtained the DNR analysis and used it to determine Kipp's
compliance with the current air quality standard for fine
particles or PM2.5. The figure to the right shows the current
extend of Kipp's violations of the air quality standard.
We know Kipp continues to violate current air quality
standards for fine particles or PM2.5. However there continue
to be unresolved questions about the chemicals released by
Kipp's stacks. The aluminum melting furnaces and die casting
operations at Kipp are known to generate toxic pollutants, but
little if any testing has been conducted. The last test on the
many die casting stacks was in 1994. Kipp reports emissions of
chlorine and hydrogen chloride from its aluminum furnaces.
Dioxins have also been measured from the furnace stacks. Soil
sampling beneath exhaust vents on the building walls measured
high concentrations of polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAH)
pollutants. Indoor sampling has measured polychorinated
biphenyls (PCB). Dioxins, PAH and PCB are carcinogens.
Since the addition of the tall stacks in 2007, CAM
successfully lobbied for a compliance inspection by EPA which
found numerous violations by Kipp - violations missed by DNR
staff. CAM has also continued to work with our state
legislators to lobby Kipp, the city public health department,
DNR and the federal EPA for testing of air pollution emissions
from Kipp and compliance with current air standards.
CAM and neighborhood residents have found the cards are
stacked against them in favor of Kipp's profits. Compliance
with existing public health environmental regulations are not
a priority, much less adopting new regulations that protect
When will our neighborhood have a clean and health
environment? When will Kipp be required to comply with
environmental laws? When will Kipp move out of our residential
neighborhood to a more suitable industrial park where it can
do less harm?
During the summer of 2007, Madison-Kipp installed the last of 12 new stacks at its aluminum die casting foundries on Atwood and Fair Oaks Avenues. The stacks which are visible at the corner of Atwood Avenue and Elmside Boulevard are shown in Figure 1 (the image on the right). The new stacks, each at least 76 feet high, were required before the Department of Natural Resources would allow more air pollution discharges from Kipp. Issued in March, the DNR permit allowed Kipp to emit another 30 tons per year of particulate matter from the aluminum melting furnaces. The 12 new stacks were not intended for the furnaces, which already use two 100-foot stacks, but for the existing aluminum die casting operations.Until recently, oily die castings fumes were released from short roof vents. For years, both Kipp and the DNR were aware the fumes were violating air quality standards, especially in the residential backyards abutting Kipp buildings, but waited until federal rules forced improvements. One option for meeting the air standards was to reduce or eliminate the die castings fumes with air pollution control equipment. Instead, Kipp opted to use dilution as the solution and install taller stacks.
So the good news is there are 12 new stacks dispersing Kipp's die casting fumes over a larger area, thus assuring that Kipp meets the air quality standards for particulate matter. The DNR analysis approving the new discharges concludes that with the new stacks, Kipp will cause concentrations which are no more than 96% of the air quality standards for Total Suspended Particulate or TSP. The bad news is that these same TSP standards were adopted back in 1971. The TSP standard was the first national air quality standard for particulate matter and was adopted shortly after President Nixon helped create the Clean Air Act.
The Clean Air Act does require USEPA to regularly review the latest scientific information and adopt new air quality standards when necessary. This has been done several times, with the newest air standard for particulate matter adopted in September of 2006. This standard provides much more protection, especially for people with asthma or heart disease. You can read more about the new air quality standard at the USEPA web site: http://epa.gov/pm/. The newer standard is far more stringent than the 1971 standard applicable to Kipp's operations. In fact, the DNR analysis shows that with the 12 new stacks, Kipp die castings fumes will still generate concentrations of particulate matter more than twice the 2006 air standard, even without considering any existing pollution. Before the new stacks were approved, neighborhood residents did ask that either the new 2006 standard be applied to Kipp's operations, or the die castings fumes be controlled, but Kipp and DNR chose rely on the older 1971 standard.
With the 12 taller stacks, it was hoped there would be a reduction in the noise generated by the large fans which exhaust the die casting fumes. Now that the last of the stacks has been installed, it is apparent on a quiet evening that fan noise is no quieter and carries even further. This situation has led to neighborhood discussions with city staff about the adequacy of Madison's noise ordinance. In a situation very similar to the air standard, Kipp is subject to an older 75-decibel noise level adopted in 1973. Other cities, such as Milwaukee, have far more stringent noise levels including a limit of 45-decibels at night-time. Even Madison's noise limits for new operations is fairly lax compared to other cities, allowing 65-decibels.
Will neighbors need to wait another 36 years for more improvements? Perhaps not. This fall, USEPA proposed new permit regulations to force factories such as Kipp to comply with the latest and more protective 2006 air quality standard for particulate matter. You can read more about these regulations at http://epa.gov/nsr/. Initial talks have begun with city staff to determine how Madison's noise ordinance can be updated to be as protective as other cities. Neighbors must continue to work if Kipp is to become quieter and cleaner. Remember - "Every neighborhood deserves a clean environment."
October 11, 2006 - DNR Asks for Kipp Pollution Cleanup Plans
In the spring of 2006, the air pollution permit for Madison-Kipp aluminun foundry operations on Atwood and Fair Oaks expired. Kipp has applied for renewal of this permit but will first need to address air quality standard violations caused by existing discharges. Through their letters, emails and petitions, residents, state representatives and Clean Air Madison have asked the Department of Natural Resources to expedite renewal of Kipp's permit so these violations are addressed as soon as possible.
Neighborhood efforts have started to have an effect. In his letter of October 11th to Kipp, Air Management Supervisor Tom Roushar asks Kipp to provide plans for needed improvements by the end of November. Kipp suggested to the DNR that it will "reconfigure operations between the Madison and Sun Prairie locations." DNR reminded Kipp that there has been significant public interest in expediting the permit renewal and asks Kipp to submit a revised application so review can proceed in a timely manner. You can read the DNR's October 11th letter here.
The need for pollution cleanup at Kipp is partly due to recent changes in the USEPA and DNR computer modeling programs. These are important air pollution control tools which predict how air pollutants disperse from stack and roof vents and verify that air quality standards are met. These programs are needed because no one can afford to place air quality monitors at every possible location where pollutant exposure might occur. Earlier this year, DNR adopted USEPA's new computer model, AERMOD. This model is far better for predicting concentrations caused by the short vents exhausting die casting fumes from Kipp's roof. Modeling by CAM using AERMOD shows that current Kipp discharges are violating air quality standards. You can see the AERMOD modeling results and predicted air quality standard violations caused by Kipp at CAM's web page.
Progress has been slow, but it appears that cleanup of Kipp air pollution is likely. As always, the devil is in the details. Kipp has a history of investing as little as possible in pollution cleanup with little regard for its neighbors. Will the noisy roof vents continue to be used? Will there be a new 100-foot stack? Will the aluminum melting furnaces and chlorine storage move to Sun Prairie? Stay tuned and continue to write both the DNR and your state representatives.
Correspondence document (.pdf):
- DNR Letter to MKC on Permit Renewal,11oct06.pdf
May 3, 2006 - Mission Accomplished - CAM
Stops More Kipp Air Pollution
On May 3, 2006 Madison-Kipp Corporation quietly surrendered the air pollution permit that Kipp had been fighting over for years with neighbors. This was a first for Wisconsin, with Steven Dunn, DNR Construction Permit Chief indicating, "I can’t recall a permit ever being revoked."
If you were listening carefully, you might have heard a collective sign of relief throughout the Schenk-Atwood neighborhood. Kipp’s surrender of the permit ended a two year battle as neighborhood residents fought Kipp and DNR over the aluminum foundry’s desire to release of another 61 tons per year of uncontrolled particulate pollution.
In a classic David and Goliath match, neighborhood residents combined their resources, formed a nonprofit organization called Clean Air Madison ("CAM") and supported their effort with spaghetti dinners and music fund raisers, eventually overcoming the well-heeled company.
Vicky Hestad, a CAM organizer said: "Our motto is, ‘Every neighborhood deserves a clean environment’. It was sad that we needed to fight so hard for clean air in our neighborhood. We’re tired but extremely happy for this victory."
Kim Wright, who lives near Kipp and attributes asthma attacks to the foundry emissions, was ecstatic. "It’s amazing what ordinary people can accomplish when they pull together and refuse to be intimidated."
Last spring, a 5-day trial was held before Administrative Law Judge Jeffrey Boldt. CAM showed that discharges from short stacks and open doors at Kipp’s facilities were already violating air quality standards, and argued the foundry should not be allowed additional air pollution. In his decision Judge Boldt ordered Kipp to install two ground-level air monitors near the foundry, at locations where computer programs indicated pollution from Kipp would likely be most concentrated. The Judge also ordered Kipp to stop the release of foundry emissions from doors and other openings.
Rather than comply the new requirements imposed by Judge Boldt, Kipp surrendered its permit, asking DNR to revoke it.
According to CAM lawyer Frank Jablonski, "The air testing requirements written into Judge Boldt’s decision put Kipp in a box. Unless it surrendered its new permit, Kipp was either going to have to clean up, or get caught. Kipp decided to surrender the permit."
Kipp had fought intensely to keep its permit over the past two years. While contested case hearings over DNR air pollution permits are usually arguments over interpreting regulations or the accuracy of technical analyses, Kipp and its attorneys stretched the process out by tactics such as refusing to provide test results, making pointed threats aimed at the homes of neighbors who had challenged the permit, and fighting to keep CAM’s expert witness from testifying.
Another incentive for Kipp to surrender its permit was a new air quality monitor installed on the roof of Lowell Elementary School, which is just a block from the two 100-foot stacks slated to release the increased particulate pollution. In surrendering its permit, Kipp claimed it had never used the higher emissions. As summarized by CAM’s lawyer, "The Lowell School monitor seemed to have the same effect as putting a prominent squad car on a street with speeders. It deterred Kipp from actually pushing up its pollution."
CAM members feel more work must be done. By surrendering its permit, Kipp was able to avoid the additional air pollution control measures ordered by Judge Boldt. CAM wants to see Kipp’s ongoing violation of air quality standards addressed in a new permit that the foundry is seeking.
Kipp's Title V operation permit for air pollution from all its operations expired May 10, 2006. The company has filed for renewal of the permit, but the DNR has refused to process this application. As shown during the 2005 contested case hearing, current air pollution from Kipp is causing violations of air quality standards. CAM confirmed this conclusion with the latest air quality model, AERMOD, now used by the DNR. Since the same air polllution sources causing these violations have been operating for over ten years, the violations have been occurring for at least ten years. These violations will not be stopped until DNR processes the pending renewal application.
Correspondence documents (.pdf):
- DNR Revocation of Kipp Permit
- DNR Response to CAM on Kipp Permit Revocation
In our on-going efforts to reduce the air pollution impacts of Madison-Kipp operations on the surrounding neighborhood, Clean Air Madison has asked the DNR to expedite its review of Kipp's application to renew its air pollution control operation permit. This permit expires May 10th and approves the air pollution discharges from nearly every operation at Kipp's Atwood and Fair Oaks aluminum foundries. The March 3, 2006 letter to DNR Secretary Scott Hassett includes a petition signed by nearly 100 Atwood Avenue residents and friends.
Renewal of the air pollution operation permit will require that DNR verify that Kipp can comply with air quality regulations and standards. Just as was shown during last year's contested case hearing over Air Pollution Permit #03-POY-328, CAM expects that an accurate dispersion modeling analysis will demonstrate that Kipp has been violating air quality standards. This new modeling analysis will use the DNR’s recently approved AERMOD dispersion model. The new model has been in use in other states for several years but as of January 1st 2006 is the officially approved model for DNR evaluation of new air pollution emissions and permits in Wisconsin as well. AERMOD is uniquely suited to evaluate the unique problems at Kipp - short roof vents exhausting die casting fumes into adjacent homes and backyards. Computer modeling provides more air quality protection to surrounding residents than an air quality monitor, because the model can predict pollutant concentrations at many locations and under all weather conditions when Kipp's discharges are at their peak. Along with the use of this more accurate computer model, CAM asks the DNR to correct modeling errors presented during the contest case hearing. These errors include placing Kipp buildings in the wrong location, using summer ventilation conditions for the evaluating air quality impacts during winter months, and not including fumes lost through open doors and windows. CAM and residents signing the petition have requested that DNR begin processing the Kipp application for renewal as soon as possible to assure that Kipp will make the required improvements necessary to protect air quality standards.
CAM Prepares for Circuit Court Appeal
In his revised November 15, 2005 decision, Administrative
Law Judge Boldt weakened his original decision but kept his
orders for new air quality protections including the
elimination of fugitive air pollution from windows and
doors, and three years of air quality monitoring at two
separate sites. While Kipp representatives told the press
and public they welcomed the monitoring, the ink had barely
dried on Judge Boldt’s decision when Kipp began trying to
weaken and overturn it. On December 14, 2005, Kipp filed an
appeal with Dane County circuit court. Since the hearing
process is over, the state Attorney General must now defend
Judge Boldt’s decision and CAM’s initial victory. With this
turn of events, neighbors can finally hope that their
government will begin meeting its obligation to protect
them. CAM is now preparing to join with the Attorney
General's office in defending the hard fought protections to
neighborhood air quality.
January 8, 2006 - Fundraising
The fight for clean air will continue, so look out for future fundraising activities. Last year there was a sold out spaghetti dinner at Bunky’s and three-band music fest at the Harmony. Upcoming events include:
- Pancake Breakfast -- Sunday, January 8, 2006, 8:30 – 11:00 am at the Wil-Mar Center, 953 Jenifer St. This is co-sponsored with Madison Hours.
- Concert of Neighborhood Bands -- Sunday, Feb. 19, 2006, 3:00 - 8:00 pm at Harmony Bar & Grill. Featuring Tongue ‘n’ Groove, The Motor Primitives, and more.
November 15, 2005 - Judge Boldt Issues
On November 15, 2005, Judge Boldt revised his October 27, 2005 decision for the contested case hearing over the Madison-Kipp air pollution permit. Kipp had asked for "clarification" of the original decision, requesting the elimination of an air quality monitor at Lowell Elementary School, reduction in the monitoring schedule from continuous to every 6 days, and reduction in the length of monitoring from three years to one. Clean Air Madison argued these changes would substantially weaken the air quality protections Boldt had granted neighborhood residents. In his revised decision, Boldt continued to require Kipp to operate two air quality monitors including a monitor at or near Lowell, reduced the frequency of monitoring to a 3-day schedule, but continued to require three years of monitoring. In his revised decision, Boldt also clarified that the air quality monitors must begin operation no later than April 1, 2006. He stated that if an exceedence of the TSP air quality standard is measured and the DNR finds Kipp responsible, DNR should take appropriate enforcement action and evaluate Kipp's emissions using the recently approved AERMOD dispersion model. This new and more accurate model replaced the ISC3 model used by DNR to issue Kipp's contested permit. The new model was approved by USEPA on November 9th. No changes were made to the requirement for Kipp to demonstate that its ventilation system is sufficient to keep emissions from escaping windows, doors or other building openings, and to continuously operate the ventilation systems which capture fumes from the die casting operations. The requirement to operate two air quality monitors, despite the shorted 3-day schedule, will require Kipp to either reduce its emissions into the surrounding neighborhood or be found in violation of air quality standards.
Here is the documentation of the decision revision. (.pdf)
October 27, 2005 - Judge Boldt Makes Final Decision on CAM Challenge of Kipp Air Pollution Permit
On October 27, 2005, Judge Boldt completed his deliberations of the extensive testimony and evidence from Clean Air Madison's challenge of the Madison-Kipp air pollution permit. While Boldt did not revoke Kipp's permit as requested by CAM, he did incorporate other CAM recommendations which will provide additional protection to the area residents and neighborhood air quality. Specific requirements in the decision include:
- Demonstrate that no fugitive emissions are released from windows, doors or other building openings.
- Continuously operate the ventilation systems which capture fumes from the Atwood and Fair Oaks die casting operations.
- Continuously operate two air quality monitors to measure total suspended particulate (TSP) for a period of three years. One monitor is to be located between Kipp and Atwood Avenue, the monitor is to be located at or near Lowell Elementary School.
- If either of the monitors shows that an air quality standard is exceeded, Kipp contributes to this exceedence and USEPA approves the new AERMOD dispersion model, then Kipp's the air pollution permit is revoked.
The primary focus of the contested case hearing over Kipp's recent permit was the accuracy of the DNR dispersion modeling analysis. DNR had used the older ISC3 model to verify Kipp's emissions would comply with air quality standards. DNR staff knew the ISC3 model was incapable of estimating concentrations near the Kipp buildings and in neighborhood backyards, but still used this model to issue the permit. More accurate models were available to DNR staff, and these models show Kipp will violate air quality standards. DNR also claimed that ISC3 was faulty when estimating concentrations on hilly terrain and so ignored the changes in elevations in the surrounding neighborhood. Had DNR considered terrain, which it had done for other air pollution permits, it would show Kipp would violate air quality standards. USEPA actually approved the new and more accurate AERMOD model on November 9th. The federal register discussing the release of this new model is available at the USEPA web site.
It has been a long road since Kipp was issued an air pollution permit on April 26, 2004 which allowed an additional 61 tons per year of emissions into the surrounding neighborhood. Little did we know how visciously Kipp would defend its right to pollute. Little did we know how the DNR would defend its inadequate practices which were the only way it could approve more air pollution and ignore the complaints of residents exposed to Kipp's discharges. While Kipp was allowed to keep their permit, the additional air quality protections Judge Boldt granted neighborhood residents was a victory for Clean Air Madison, surrounding Atwood Avenue residents and anyone who wants clean air in their own neighborhood.
Here is the documentation of Judge Boldt's decision (.pdf)
October 29, 2005 - CAM
News Release on Judge's Decision
Clean Air Madison learned today that the judge in its contested case hearing has issued a decision requiring Kipp to install multiple monitors and banning groundlevel pollution.
Clean Air lawyer Frank Jablonski of Progressive Law Group issued the following statements:
"The ban on ground level pollution should finally bring some relief to people who have been suffering for so long just because they live next to Kipp. Anyone who walks through the Kipp neighborhood on a bad day knows the heavy metallic smell and taste associated with Kipp’s emissions."
"The air testing requirements written into this decision put Kipp in a box. Kipp is either going to have to clean up or get caught. Either way, the neighborhood wins."
"We are going to prepare our Clean Air Act lawsuit and wait for the monitoring results. We hope that, with the pressure of the monitors, Kipp cleans up enough that we never have to file it."
"We are meeting soon to celebrate and plan further strategy."
Help CAM raise money to improve air quality in our neighborhood and come shake a leg at the shin-dig!
October 29, 2005 - Capital Times
Article Explains Ruling on Kipp Air Pollution Permit
By Pat Schneider of The Capital Times October 29,
Madison-Kipp Corp. and its neighbors both are claiming victory in the latest round of a long-running battle over pollution from the east side metal fabricating plant.
State administrative law judge Jeffrey Boldt ruled Friday that a Department of Natural Resources permit allowing Kipp to release up to five times more byproduct particles into the air won't put the plant in violation of state air quality standards. But Kipp must install two air quality monitors, outside its factory at 2824 Atwood Ave. and at nearby Lowell Elementary School, and run them for three years, Boldt said in his decision.
Neighbors of Kipp, organized as Clean Air Madison, had contested the DNR permit, arguing it would allow Kipp to exceed air quality regulations.
"This is good for the city and good for us," Mark Meunier, Kipp vice president of human resources, said of the ruling. "We are working with the mayor to keep jobs in the city."
"The air testing requirements written into the decision put Kipp in a box," said attorney Frank Jablonski, a neighborhood resident who represented the grass-roots group in their challenge of the permit. "Kipp is either going to have to clean up or get caught. Either way, the neighborhood wins."
Madison Mayor Dave Cieslewicz earlier this month promised the 107-year-old die-casting plant up to $2.5 million in tax incentives to locate a planned expansion plant within city limits. Company officials, who also are considering sites in Sun Prairie and Lake Mills, say they will keep the Atwood Avenue plant in operation.
Meunier said Friday he expected a siting decision by the end of the year.
Air Madison had challenged the computer program DNR used to track emissions from Kipp in reviewing its permit application.
Neighbors argued that the model used did not take into account how emissions would travel to nearby buildings, like Lowell School, with its air intake equipment on the roof.
The modeling program also could not measure pollution at locations right next to the plant, neighbors said.
Boldt, citing testimony by Kipp's own expert witness, ruled that the program did not do a good job in the instances pointed to by permit opponents. A newer program developed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency does a better job, but DNR had chosen not to use it until it was formally approved by the federal agency, Boldt said.
He said it was not his place to order the DNR to use the newer program.
Steve Klafka, a Kipp neighbor and environmental engineer who testified as an expert witness for Clean Air Madison, said Friday that the decision requires Kipp to put in monitors at considerable expense to prove that they are not exceeding air quality standards.
"I doubt that they'll be able to prove that," he said.
While Kipp and DNR spokespersons pointed out that an air quality monitor had previously been run near the plant without detecting violations, Klafka said that monitor was too far away from the factory.
Meunier said Kipp would not oppose the ordered air quality monitors, but that it might be hard to find a place to install one out front of the plant on Atwood Avenue, because of trees and other obstacles.
"We'll find one for him," Jablonski said when told of Meunier's remark.
Boldt also required Kipp to ensure no pollutants would seep out of the plant by running its roof fans whenever its die-casting machines are operating to draw air in from outside.
Meunier said that is a long-standing procedure at the company.
Marcia Penner, the DNR attorney who represented the agency in the case, said all parties have 30 days to appeal the ruling. She said she did not think the DNR would do so.
September 13, 2005 - CAM Submits Brief
and Waits for Judge's Decision over Kipp Air Pollution
CAM recently completed its final step to overturn the last air pollution permit issued to Madison-Kipp. On September 13, 2005, CAM's legal team submitted the final brief to Judge Jeffrey Bolt. The brief summarized reasons why the permit should have been issued and responded to arguments in the September 1st briefs submitted by the Wisconsin DNR and Kipp. A final decision by Judge Bolt is expected this fall. A tremendous effort was needed for the contested case hearing challenging DNR approval of new air pollution from Kipp. Thanks to everyone who donated their time, money and energy to the cause. It was only possible by the united effort of so many people.
We all hope and pray for a happy ending to this tale of David versus Goliath.
July 30, 2005 - Capital Times Article Covers Air Quality Monitor Placement
Kipp Tiff Spurs Air Test At School
- Monitoring Is Win For Neighbors, Saturday,
July 30, 2005, By Pat Schneider The Capital Times
An air quality monitor is collecting samples on the roof of Lowell Elementary School, as part of a long-running dispute between Madison-Kipp Corp. and its neighbors.
The monitor will operate at the school, 401 Maple Ave., for one year, in response to requests from the Madison school district, Mayor Dave Cieslewicz and numerous residents, Department of Natural Resources Secretary Scott Hassett said in a July 22 letter to city, school and state health officials.
The monitor had been sought by Clean Air Madison, a grass-roots group that claims metal fabricator Madison-Kipp Corp. is polluting the neighborhood.
"This is definitely a big victory," Frank Jablonski, attorney for Clean Air Madison, said Friday.
Kipp officials had appealed to the Madison School Board not to allow the monitor."We're just cooperating with it being on our building," said Ken Syke, the school district's coordinator for public communications and business relations.
The city's public health department will operate the monitor; the state health department will analyze the samples.
Kipp officials did not respond to a request for comment on Friday.
Students at the east side school are especially at risk, neighbors argue, because emissions from Kipp, a block away at 2824 Atwood Ave., travel toward the roof of the school, where air is taken in for the school's ventilation system.
The group contested DNR's decision last year to issue a permit allowing Kipp to increase fivefold the byproduct particles it releases into the air.
Clean Air Madison claims that the DNR used a faulty model to measure the impact of Kipp's emissions in granting the permit.
A five-day hearing on the group's objections was held last spring. Kipp and Clean Air Madison are now submitting briefs to Administrative Law Judge Jeffrey Boldt, who is expected to rule on the issue in the fall.
Kipp officials say Kipp meets all standards for air emissions.
July 22, 2005 - CAM Submits Legal Brief in Case Hearing
Clean Air Madison has submitted a 33-page brief to Administrative Law Judge Jeffrey Bolt supporting its challenge of an air pollution permit issued to Madison-Kipp Corporation, an aluminum foundry located on Madison's east side. The brief cites exhibits and statements from a five-day trial which ended May 3rd. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources had issued the permit allowing 61 tons per year of new particulate matter emissions from the Kipp aluminum foundry. To issue the permit, the DNR was required to show the new discharges would comply with air quality standards.
In its brief, Clean Air Madison shows how the DNR permit analysis was fraught with errors and violated state laws. The DNR made decisions based on the assumption that Kipp was located in a flat, rural farm field, ignoring the rolling terrain in the surrounding populated east-side Madison neighborhood. The DNR did not consider discharges from windows and doors, and ignored the concerns of residents located in nearby multi-story homes, some with backyards abutting the foundry.
A more accurate analysis prepared by Clean Air Madison using readily available methods shows violations of air quality standards. Rather than use these methods to protect nearby residents, DNR was shown to simply cut and paste its older, flawed analysis as well as its responses to public comments prepared years earlier. The brief states: "Had DNR made any of the improvements presented by Petitioners ("Clean Air") to improve the accuracy of its dispersion modeling analysis, an air quality standard exceedence would have been predicted and Permit #03-POY-328 could not have been issued. Whether changes were made to incorporate terrain, address fugitive emissions, estimate downwash recirculation cavity concentrations, or correct the numerous modeling input errors, the result is the same: an exceedance is predicted."
Clean Air Madison has asked Judge Bolt to declare the
permit void; require DNR to conduct an error-free, modern
environmental impact analysis; and, require Kipp to operate
an air quality monitor to measure exposure of nearby
residents. Prior to making a decision on the permit, Judge
Bolt will now receive additional briefs from DNR and Kipp
responding to Clean Air Madison arguments that DNR has
violated state laws by approving the new discharges.
May 22, 2005 - Benefit Show for CAM
Sunday, May 22nd from 4 to 8pm at the Harmony Bar, 2201 Atwood Ave, come enjoy some great local acts and support a great cause at the same time! Featuring Tongue 'n' Groove, Peter Leidy, and Ritt Deitz, it's an evening of good music for only $10 ($5 for kids 12+). Tix are available from the Harmony and Green Earth. Check out the poster ad.
May 3, 2005 - Trial Ends Over Kipp Air Pollution Permit
Although it may have lacked the drama and star appeal of the Michael Jackson trial, the recent contested case hearing of a grassroots neighborhood group vs. the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and Madison-Kipp Corp. had many local residents on the edges of their seats. The outcome of this trial will affect the daily lives of everyone within breathing distance of Madison-Kipp, a local aluminum foundry and notorious air polluter.
On May 3, a five-day trial concluded over the last air pollution permit issued by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to the Madison-Kipp aluminum foundry. The permit allowed Kipp to increase its particulate emissions by 61 tons per year. Neighbors, organized as Clean Air Madison (CAM), presented their case to administrative law judge Jeffrey Bolt, explaining why the permit should not have been issued. The primary issue was the DNR's failure to accurately estimate impacts on air quality in the neighborhood from Kipp's air pollution discharges. While the DNR was primarily responsible for defending its decision to issue the permit, Kipp hired its own lawyers and consultants to defend its permit.
As explained during the trial, the air pollution regulations that apply to Kipp are over 30 years old, so their discharges are released into the neighborhood without pollution controls. Before these discharges can be permitted, state environmental laws require that the DNR must also verify that downwind air pollutant concentrations are within air quality standards. To estimate these concentrations, the DNR used computer modeling and five years of wind and weather data. The use of computer modeling is a common tool used by other state environmental agencies when approving new air pollution from industry.
CAM's litigation team included attorneys Frank Jablonski and Kimberly Wright, and environmental engineer Steven Klafka. All are neighborhood residents who donated their time or worked for reduced fees. During the trial, CAM showed how the DNR made many mistakes by copying old computer modeling files rather than verifying information provided by Kipp. In their analysis, the DNR placed stacks and buildings in the wrong locations and used stack dimensions which violated Kipp's air pollution permit. DNR staff did not account for seasonable changes in flow rates from the 11 Atwood plant roof vents or vent obstructions shown on Kipp's building plans. Klafka explained how the DNR ignored its own modeling guidelines which required the consideration of terrain in the neighborhood, and ignored its own memorandum which stated that pollutant concentrations close to Kipp buildings and in neighborhood backyards exceeded air quality standards.
CAM showed that despite a longstanding problem with air pollution releases from Kipp doors and windows, DNR did not consider these 'fugitive' releases in its modeling analyses, nor did they prohibit Kipp from having these releases, or require any monitoring to verify they no longer occurred. It was shown how DNR modeling decisions favored issuance of a permit to Kipp, provided less protection of the air quality in the surrounding neighborhood, and completely ignored air quality concerns raised by neighborhood residents. If any of the dispersion modeling errors were corrected, Klafka showed that air quality standards would be violated and the permit should not have been issued to Kipp.
The cut and paste approach used by the DNR for their modeling analysis was also apparent in their written responses to comments submitted by neighborhood residents. DNR staff had simply copied their responses from another project approved four years ago, even though these responses contained numerous errors. For instance, the DNR stated that it did not need to consider pollutant concentrations at above-ground locations such as balconies on nearby homes or the rooftop of Lowell Elementary School. However, more recent guidance from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) clearly directed the DNR to apply air standards at these locations. The DNR had also dismissed the effects of terrain by claiming the difference in elevation between Kipp and Lowell School was only 15 feet. This ignored the Kipp plant on Fair Oaks Avenue, which is located at a lower elevation down a hill. If the location of the Fair Oaks plant were considered, the DNR modeling guidance clearly would have required that they consider terrain when running their models.
Contested case hearings over DNR air pollution permits are typically arguments over proper interpretation of the regulations or accurate technical analyses. However, Kipp and its attorneys spent much of their time creating unanticipated hurdles for CAM. They refused to provide documents such as test results requested by CAM, threatened to take the homes of residents challenging the permit, and fought to keep Klafka from testifying for CAM. These hardball tactics are why it is estimated that Kipp has spent over $100,000 so far defending its air pollution permit.
For example, Kipp attorney Jon Axelrod spent much time during the trial attacking Klafka's qualifications. Judge Bolt brought Axelrod's cross-examination to an end when Axelrod accused Klafka of being a "menace to national security". One insightful moment during the hearing came when Axelrod warned Judge Bolt and attending reporters that if Kipp lost the permit, it would move its jobs to China. Later, Kipp Vice President Mark Meunier, under oath, recanted when responding to questions from CAM attorney Frank Jablonski, and made it clear this was not true-that Kipp had no such plans to move if it lost its permit. Meunier later admitted that the DNR had approved installation of additional tall stacks at the foundry to address neighborhood air quality concerns, but that Kipp did not intend to install them.
After the trial, Judge Bolt and attorneys from all sides conducted a "view" and walked around the neighborhood near Kipp. It was a day when neighbors reported a strong die-lube odor from Kipp. Ironically, DNR staff conducting the modeling analyses for the contested permit acknowledged during the trial that they never bothered to visit the neighborhood even though it was only 3 miles from their office.
When the hearing ended, Kipp attorneys insisted that transcripts be prepared, resulting in another unanticipated cost for CAM. All sides must now prepare briefs summarizing arguments for Judge Bolt to consider. By the end of this summer, it will be up to Judge Bolt to sort through the testimony and determine if the DNR should have issued Kipp a permit to discharge another 61 tons per year of pollution into the surrounding neighborhood.
2005 - Kipp Permit Hearing is Continues
Neighborhood Residents Encouraged to Attend
After many months of work and waiting, the contested case hearing over the last air pollution permit issued to Madison-Kipp began Monday, April 11th and continued for four days. Neighbors presented their case to the administrative law judge, Jeffrey Bolt, explaining why the permit should not have been issued by the DNR. The primary issue is the failure of the DNR to accurately estimate the air quality impacts of additional air pollution emissions from the Kipp aluminum foundry on Atwood Avenue.
Steven Klafka, CAM's environmental engineering expert, showed how DNR made many mistakes by copying old computer files rather than verifying information provided by Kipp. The DNR placed stacks and buildings in the wrong location, and used stack dimensions which violated Kipp's permit. They did not account for seasonable changes roof vent flow rates or obstructions on roof vents shown on Kipp's building plans. He showed how the DNR ignored its own modeling guidelines which required the consideration of terrain in the neighborhood, and ignored its own memorandum which stated that pollutant concentrations closed to Kipp buildings and in neighborhood backyards exceeded air quality standards. Despite a long standing problem with air pollution releases from Kipp doors, windows and building openings into the adjacent neighborhood, the DNR did not consider these 'fugitive' releases in its modeling analysis, nor prohibit Kipp from having fugitive releases. All the DNR modeling decisions favored issuance of a permit to Kipp, and provided less protection of the air quality in the surrounding neighborhood. If these errors are corrected, Klafka showed that air quality standards would be violated and the permit should not have been issued to Kipp.
One insightful moment during the hearing came when Kipp attorney Jon Axelrod stated that if Kipp lost the permit, it would move its jobs to China. Later, Kipp Vice President Mark Menieur recanted when responding to questions by CAM attorney Frank Jablonski, and made it clear this was not true, and Kipp had no such plans to move if it lost its permit. It will be up to Judge Bolt to sort through similar misleading testimony by DNR and Kipp representatives, as they defended issuance of the permit which allowed Kipp to discharge another 61 tons per year of particulate into the surrounding neighborhood.
After the four long days of testimony and arguments, Judge Bolt decided to provide time for all sides to prepare for the final arguments. The last day of the hearing is scheduled for Tuesday, May 3rd. At this time, the hearing is scheduled for 9:00 am at the Department of Administration, Division of Hearings & Appeals, located at 5005 University Avenue. This is at the corner of Whitney Way and University Avenue near the Irish Waters Restaurant. The office telephone number is 266-3865.
All neighborhood residents are encouraged to
attend the last day of the hearing on Tuesday, May 3rd
to support and experience their day in court.
Here is media coverage of the hearing:
Kipp Pollution Testimony Ends
Saturday, April 16,
2005, By Pat Schneider The Capital Times --
Testimony wound up Thursday in an administrative hearing
on whether the Department of Natural Resources properly
issued a pollution permit for Madison-Kipp Corp.
A date has not yet been set for closing arguments in the case in which Kipp neighbors, organized as Clean Air Madison, are challenging the DNR's action in issuing a permit allowing the east side metal fabricator to increase five-fold the dust it can release in the air through a pair of 100-foot smoke stacks.
In four days of testimony, administrative law judge Jeffrey Boldt heard from experts for Kipp and Clean Air Madison.
On Thursday, DNR air management specialist Gail Good testified that she had not visited the Kipp facilities on Atwood and Fair Oaks avenues, but used the computer modeling system she always did to conclude that Kipp would meet state and federal air quality standards with the heavier emissions. Changes in terrain around Kipp were not taken into account, she said.
Clean Air Madison contends that DNR guidelines were violated in failing to account for terrain.
Because of changes in elevation and the inability of the DNR's model to measure pollution near the stacks, nearby Lowell Elementary School and homes adjacent to Kipp may be exposed to prohibited concentrations of particulate matter, permit foes say.
Good said she exercised professional judgment in adhering to the model approved by the federal Environmental Protection Agency.
Neighbors, Kipp Spar On Issues At Hearing
Tuesday, April 12,
2005, By Pat Schneider The Capital Times -- At
the start of what was expected to be several days of
technical testimony by experts in a grass-roots
challenge to Madison-Kipp's pollution permit, Kipp's
attorney on Monday said the issue was not air quality in
the Schenk-Atwood neighborhood, but keeping jobs in the
"What's at stake here is whether Kipp can maintain its competitiveness or whether 500 jobs are outsourced to China," attorney Jon Axelrod said of the east side metal fabricator in opening statements of a hearing before state administrative law judge Jeffrey Boldt.
Kipp neighbors, organized as Clean Air Madison, are challenging the Department of Natural Resources' action in issuing a permit allowing Kipp to increase by five-fold the dust in its air emissions.
Frank Jablonski, attorney for Clean Air Madison, countered during a break that Axelrod's remarks were inappropriate because Kipp's ability to compete in the global market was not the issue being litigated.
"It has nothing to do with this case," Jablonski said of Axelrod's claims. "It can't be proved by the evidence entered here and it's probably not true."
The friction over spin in the opening arguments was the latest clash in what was a contentious -- and prolonged -- lead-up to the hearing. To cap it off, an anonymous threat was received last week in which the caller said opponents to Kipp's permit should be shot.
The threat prompted posting Monday of a Capitol Police officer at the Division of Hearings and Appeals, but there was no sign of trouble from the handful of observers who attended.
Clean Air Madison contends that DNR used the wrong methods to calculate the composition and trajectory of emissions from Kipp's two 100-foot smoke stacks under the new permit.
The computer model used to calculate emissions failed to factor in changing terrain in the streets around the factory, Clean Air Madison says.
DNR attorney Marcia Penner said the agency used the appropriate model, that it is the only one approved by the state, and that it meets the standards of the federal Environmental Protection Agency.
Security Hiked For Kipp Hearing, Air
Permit Foes Threatened
April 7, 2005, By Pat Schneider The Capital Times
-- Capitol Police will provide security at a Department
of Natural Resources hearing next week after a phone
caller said opponents of a new pollution permit for
Madison-Kipp Corp. should be shot.
Administrative Law Judge Jeffrey Boldt on Tuesday notified attorneys in the case that "an unidentified woman caller had stated someone should shoot people' who object to issuance of the permit with a sawed-off shotgun.'"
Frank Jablonski, attorney for Clean Air Madison, a grass-roots group of Kipp neighbors challenging the permit issued by the DNR, said Wednesday he would like to see the hearing moved to the City-County Building, or other location with "built-in" security.
Jablonski said he also is concerned for the safety of the people he represents away from the hearing.
"This is a general threat directed at anyone who opposes Kipp getting the permit," he said.
Jablonski said he intended to contact Madison Police about security for the petitioners in the case.
In a contested case hearing scheduled to begin Monday before Boldt, Clean Air Madison is appealing the DNR's decision to issue a permit allowing the east side metal fabricator to increase fivefold the particulate matter it can release from its Atwood Avenue plant.
The hearing is scheduled to be held at 9 a.m. at the Division of Hearings and Appeals of the state Department of Administration, 5005 University Ave.
Jon Axelrod, an attorney with DeWitt Ross & Stevens who is representing Kipp, said in an e-mailed statement Wednesday that he agreed that "the threat should be taken seriously."
He suggested that the Division of Hearings and Appeals use its caller ID capacity to help police identify who made the threat. Axelrod also suggested that metal detectors be used at the Kipp hearing "for the safety of all."
He declined further comment.
Jablonski called the phone threat "disconcerting and distracting." He said it was the latest in a series of incidents surrounding the case that have intimidated Kipp neighbors challenging the permit.
Neighbors were so shaken following a February letter -- in which Kipp attorneys, citing the $1.1 million combined value of their homes, cautioned they were not immune from penalties for making frivolous claims -- that some refused to be identified in a story in The Capital Times on Clean Air Madison's campaign.
A hearing was scheduled Wednesday at which Jablonski said he hoped Boldt would deny Kipp's unusual motion to disqualify Clean Air Madison expert witness Steven Klafka.
He said the attempt to prevent Klafka from testifying was part of procedural maneuvering "aimed directly at intimidating petitioners."
"We have not been able to concentrate the way we need to and prepare a substantive case," Jablonski said. "There have been lots of long briefs, arguments and motions that occupied much of the last three months," he said.
April 11, 2005 - Kipp Permit Hearing
After many months of work and waiting, the contested case hearing over the last air pollution permit issued to Madison-Kipp will begin Monday, April 11th. Neighbors will present their case to the administrative law judge, Jeffrey Bolt, explaining why the permit should not have been issued by the DNR. The primary issue is the failure of the DNR to accurately estimate the air quality impacts of additional air pollution emissions from the Kipp aluminum foundry on Atwood Avenue. The DNR and Kipp attorneys will then be allowed to present their side of the case.
At this time, the hearing is scheduled for 9:00 am on Monday, April 11th, at the Department of Administration, Division of Hearings & Appeals, located at 5005 University Avenue. This is at the corner of Whitney Way and University Avenue near the Irish Waters Restaurant. The office telephone number is 266-3865.
All neighborhood residents are encouraged to attend the hearing to support and experience their day in court.
Please note that a death threat to neighborhood residents opposed to the permit was sent to Judge Bolt's office. The hearing location may change to provide more safety. Read about this threat in the April 6th Capital Times:
The article states:
(CAM Attorney Frank) Jablonski called the phone threat "disconcerting and distracting." He said it was the latest in a series of incidents surrounding the case that have intimidated Kipp neighbors challenging the permit.
Neighbors were so shaken following a February letter -- in which Kipp attorneys, citing the $1.1 million combined value of their homes, cautioned they were not immune from penalties for making frivolous claims -- that some refused to be identified in a story in The Capital Times on Clean Air Madison's campaign.
A hearing was scheduled today at which Jablonski said he hoped Boldt would deny Kipp's unusual motion to disqualify Clean Air Madison expert witness Steven Klafka.
He said the attempt to prevent Klafka from testifying was part of procedural maneuvering "aimed directly at intimidating petitioners."
"We have not been able to concentrate the way we need to and prepare a substantive case," Jablonski said.
"There have been lots of long briefs, arguments and motions that occupied much of the last three months," he said.
March 13, 2005 - Info Meeting and "The CAM Song" Premiere Held at Cafe Zoma
Neighbors gathered on March 13th to get an update on CAM activities, ask questions, enjoy homemade and cafe treats, then listen to the premiere of the new CAM Song, composed by Peter Leidy. If you 'd like to see the lyrics and sing along with the crowd, go here.
February 25, 2005 - CAM Requests Protection from Harrassment by Madison-Kipp
On Friday, February 25, 2005, attorneys for Clean Air Madison requested that Administrative Law Judge Jeffrey Bolt stop Madison-Kipp and its DeWitt, Ross & Stevens attorneys from harrassing neighborhood residents who have petitioned for an independent review of Kipp's latest DNR air pollution permit. A contested case hearing before Judge Bolt is scheduled for later this year.
CAM requested that the Judge Bolt provide protection and order Kipp and its attorneys "from further threatening any of the Petitioners" and to stop: "making threats to the effect that, or implying that, Petitioners'; homes or other assets are placed at risk as a consequence of Clean Air having brought and advanced this review of DNR's permit issuance."
You can read the full text of CAM's Motion for Protective Orders and Findings (in .pdf format) here.
February 9, 2005 - Madison School Board Supports CAM Efforts
On Monday, January 31, 2005 Clean Air Madison was given the opportunity to present its cause to the Madison School Board. Recent evaluation of the discharges at Madison-Kipp had shown that by raising the two aluminum furnace stacks from 60 to 100 feet in 2003, Kipp had moved the point of maximum air quality impact to Lowell Elementary School, located only 500 feet from Kipp. Many neighborhood children attend Lowell. In addition, Lowell is a Title I school with a large population of low-income and minority children, an important issue for CAM's environmental justice complaint submitted to USEPA in 2004. After a long evening of listening to parents, neighbors and representatives from both CAM and Kipp, the school board agreed to ask the Department of Natural Resources to install air quality monitoring equipment at Lowell to determine if air quality standards were being met.
On February 9, 2005, the Madison School Board wrote to the DNR and requested air quality monitoring at Lowell Elementary School. You can read their letter to the DNR (in .pdf format) here.
This Capital Times article chronicles the January 31st meeting.
January 30, 2005 - Pasta Fundraiser Dinner a Great Success!
On Sunday, January 30, 2005, CAM sponsored a pasta dinner at Bunky's Cafe located on 2827 Atwood Avenue. Over 190 people attended the dinner to support the current legal challenge to DNR approval of more air pollution from the Madison-Kipp aluminum and zinc foundry in the Schenk-Atwood neighborhood. A trial is scheduled for the week of April 11th. The dinner included pasta, salad and dessert, all cooked and served by neighborhood volunteers.
A number of reporters came to experience the tremendous neighborhood support for CAM activities. Here is the Channel 27 television news report:
People who live in an East Madison neighborhood are raising money to continue their fight against a Madison Corporation.
They claim the Madison-Kipp Corporation is polluting their neighborhood including a nearby school.
Frank Jablonski felt sick a couple weeks ago when walking his dog by the Madison-Kipp Corporation. Jablonski has been working with other neighbors in the Clean Air Madison group to make sure their concerns are heard about how much pollution comes out of the plant.
Jablonski became involved about seven months ago, but neighbors have been fighting for years. Right now though Madison-Kipp is meeting air quality standards according to the Department of Natural Resources.
Many though question the validity of the group's health claims. Frank Jablonski says, 'Some people who say that we're all subject, we're all, we have some mass psychosis here because we all experience these health impacts, but that's not the case, we know it's real.'
The group's pasta fundraising dinner fundraiser was held across the street from the plant. By paying for the pasta these neighbors are contributing to the fund for the lawsuit against Kipp. 27 News tried contacting the Kipp corporation, but their office was closed.
May 24, 2004 - CAM Files Petition Against DNR
On May 24th 2004, Clean Air Madison filed a petition with the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) challenging issuance an air pollution permit to Madison-Kipp Corporation on Atwood Avenue. DNR ignored neighborhood opposition and issued Permit #03-POY-328, increasing particulate emissions from the two aluminum melting furnaces by 61 tons per year of emissions. The request for a hearing was approved and an independent review will occur during a contested case hearing conducted by an administrative hearing examiner from the Department of Administration. The hearing examiner has the authority to deny or change Kipp's air pollution permit. Additionally, Clean Air Madison filed a petition with the Dane County Circuit Court to review the DNR's decision to grant a permit to Madison-Kipp.
Clean Air Madison and other neighborhood residents submitted comments to the DNR as part of a public hearing and comment process. However, DNR effectively ignored public requests to include more stringent limits and better analysis of air pollution. If you would like to read the DNR inadequate response to public comments, click here. By petitioning the DNR for a hearing and the court to review DNR's decisions, Clean Air Madison and neighborhood residents take advantage of their rights to an independent review of DNR's decision to allow more air pollution.
The current schedule for the contesting case hearing process is as follows:
- Sept 15, 2004 - Kipp & DNR file briefs and arguments on hearing issues.
- Oct 15 - CAM response and witness list. To read the CAM response, click here.
- Nov 1 - Kipp & DNR response and witness list
- Nov 30 - Hearing examiner rules on need for hearing and relevant.
- On December 6th, the hearing examiner ruled on Madison-Kipp request to dismiss the entire hearing and specific issues. The examiner rejected Kipp's reject to dismiss the hearing which can proceed as planned for the week of February 7, 2005. Unfortunately, the examiner ruled that neighborhood residents cannot argue the DNR should have required Kipp to comply with the new air quality standard for particles less than 2.5 microns (PM2.5). The PM2.5 air quality standard was adopted by USEPA in 1997 and is designed to better protect human health. Based on the examiner's decision, Kipp will not need to comply with the new air quality standard until DNR adopts PM2.5 regulations. To read the hearing examiner's December 6th ruling, click here.
- January 28th - CAM Expert Report.
- February 18th - DNR & Kipp Expert Report
- February 19th to April 8th - Discovery and request for documents.
- April 11 to 13, 2005 - Contested case hearing.
The contested case hearing is open to the public. The location will be posted here when available.
October 21, 2004 - CAM Files
Environmental Justice Complaint with USEPA
On October 21, 2004, CAM submitted a complaint to the USEPA, Office of Civil Rights claiming that the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources issued Air Permit #03-POY-328 to Kipp in violation of the Environmental Justice Program and Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The complaint requests that USEPA conduct an investigation and determine if further environmental protection measures are warranted. The Environmental Justice Program requires fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income with respect to implementation of environmental laws. The east side of Madison, Wisconsin is home to the many low income and minority families. The east side of Madison also has the burden of dealing with the environmental impacts of the majority of the city's industries and sources of pollution.
To review a copy of the EJ complaint in .pdf format click here (1.0 MB).
Submission the EJ complaint was supported by the nearby SASY Neighborhood Association and Lowell Home and School Association (LHSA). To view the LHSA letter of support sent to USEPA in .pdf format, click here.
Midwest Environmental Advocates Awards Grant to CAM
Midwest Environmental Advocates or MEA provides legal and technical support to grassroots groups that are working for environmental justice in the Western Great Lakes region. CAM has been awarded a grant from MEA for its law suits challenging increased air pollution from Madison-Kipp. This is a matching grant which requires matching donations to receive the funds. Please consider supporting the CAM legal defense fund.
April 22, 2004 - CAM Notifies Kipp of Intent to File a Clean Air Act Lawsuit
On Earth Day, April 22nd, CAM sent notification to Kipp it intends to sue for violations of the particulate emission limitations on its two aluminum furnaces. Since the traditional public involvement and good neighbor process has failed, we are moving to the courts. The federal Clean Air Act allows citizens to sue companies which violate air pollution control laws. These violations were measured during tests conducted in the fall of 2003. Kipp now has 60 days to negotiate improvements before the suit if filed. If you would like to see the CAM notification of intent to sue Kipp, click here.
May 4, 2001 - CAM Files Title V
Petition with USEPA Administrator
On December 21, 1999, the DNR held a public hearing to receive comments on the proposed Title V air pollution permit for Kipp. This permit would establish air pollution control requirements for all of the foundries operations. Approximately 154 people attended the hearing with 124 clearly noting their opposition to approval of the existing air pollution discharges.
Despite health complaints related to existing air
pollution, the DNR issued the Title V permit to Kipp in
2001. As a result, Clean Air Madison and other residents
filed a May 4, 2001 petition with the Administrator of USEPA. The petition
requests the USEPA conduct an independent review of DNR
issuance of the Title V permit to the foundry. This
petition is still pending. If you would like to see USEPA
act on the petition, write your congressional
representative so they can encourage USEPA.
The petition claims that the DNR has failed to identify
Kipp's violations of air quality standards. Later in 2007,
DNR finally agreed with CAM and required Kipp to make
changes to comply with air quality standards.
The Title V petition is available on the USEPA web site.
The status of the petition can also be followed at the USEPA web site.
CAM will continue to monitor compliance by Kipp and can file Clean Air Act lawsuits and other challenges to assure protection of neighborhood residents.