Sterigenics to reopen plant after adding emission equipment

CHICAGO (AP) – The operator of a closed suburban Chicago plant where medical instruments were sterilized with a cancer-causing chemical has reached an agreement with the state of Illinois that will allow the plant to reopen.

Attorney General Kwame Raoul and DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert Berlin sued Oak Brook-based Sterigenics LLC last year over air pollution violations caused by the release of ethylene oxide from its Willowbrook plant.

The agreement filed in DuPage County Circuit Court will allow Sterigenics to resume operations after installing additional emission capture and control equipment at the plant. If the agreement is approved by the court, Sterigenics will be absolved of any liability for past pollution problems.

The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency shut down the Willowbrook facility in February after air quality monitoring recorded spikes of the toxic gas in surrounding neighborhoods.

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