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Pine Bend works hard to minimize emissions

In 2014, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency honored Pine Bend as an outstanding wastewater treatment operator.

A recent letter by Peter Suechting of Minneapolis (“Keep pressure on officials to reduce Mississippi River pollution”) misrepresents an annual report of allowable emissions from U.S. manufacturing facilities, and for some reason singles out Rosemount’s Flint Hills Resources Pine Bend refinery.

Pine Bend is among the cleanest refineries operating in the United States. Each day, the refinery’s wastewater treatment plant successfully processes more than 3.5 million gallons of water, typically discharging at levels well below permitted limits and with no exceedances. In 2014, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency honored Pine Bend as an outstanding wastewater treatment operator.

The refinery has also reduced its air emissions by more than 60 percent over the past 15 years.

The employees at Pine Bend deserve the credit. They work hard every day to minimize the emissions associated with manufacturing the transportation fuels and other products that Minnesotans rely on.

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This commitment to the environment extends well beyond the refinery’s fence line. Since 2000, Pine Bend has partnered with Friends of the Mississippi River to restore more than 1,000 acres of natural prairie that serves a migratory flyway for 40 percent of North America’s waterfowl and shorebirds; a 30-year partnership with Ducks Unlimited has led to the restoration of numerous lakes and marshes and the permanent protection of miles of sensitive shoreline; and a nearly 15 year-long collaboration with Environmental Initiative has meant cleaner air for all Minnesotans.

Most who work in industry value clean air and clean water, and we all want to protect the environment for future generations. That’s certainly the case for those who work at Pine Bend. 

Jake Reint is the director of public affairs for Flint Hills Resources.

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