REQUEST A PUBLIC HEARING: Natrium Fractionation Plant

Beaver PA cracker plant under constructions

Shell cracker plant under construction near Beaver, PA. This huge industrial facility is one of five or more such plants that would be part of the proposed Appalachian Storage Hub. The Natrium plant’s air permit modification notice may be all about processing more natural gas liquids to supply the feedstock needed for cracker plants. This 3/12/2019 photo is courtesy of Ted Auch PhD, Great Lakes Program Coordinator, FracTracker Alliance,

On February 14, WVDEP issued an air permit modification notice for Blue Racer’s Natrium Fractionation Plant in Marshall County, WV.

The Natrium plant is a two-mile long facility that sits along the Ohio River about 12 miles south of the city of Moundsville, WV.  A fractionation plant carries out one of the steps in refining natural gas liquids (NGLs) for use in petrochemical and plastics manufacturing. This plant likely would be processing ethane to be sent to the proposed PTT Global Ethane Cracker in Belmont County, OH, a stone’s throw north. Any excess ethane would be stored in the proposed Mountaineer Storage Facility, also nearby (see map at bottom of page). All are major infrastructure components for the proposed Appalachian Storage and Trading Hub/Petrochemical Complex. While the Natrium Plant has already been in operation for some time, it looks like they are applying for new permits to take on more NGL processing as part of the larger petrochemical hub. As a side note, Natrium does have on-site fracking pads too.

This permit does not take into consideration the emission the PTT Global Ethane Cracker will also be contributing to this area (or any other industrial facility for that matter). States are not required to take into consideration the cumulative impacts of multiple facilities that work congruently. Nor do they take into consideration cumulative health impacts of long term exposure. Plus, the DEP fails to consider particulate matter less than 0.1 microns which have been demonstrated to have greater toxic effects on the human body. Most of the proposed emissions are carcinogenic and our region can experience air inversions in valleys, making greater risk of exposure to human populations. 

In 2016,the Natrium site leaked 17,000 gallons of chlorine gas that prompted the evacuation of hundreds of nearby residents and were cited for multiple safety violations.

We need people to send in written requests to have a public hearing on this permit. If the hearing is granted, we will try to provide talking points to citizens who wish to attend and for those who want to submit written comments.

Permit details and how to submit your request for a public hearing are here:

The following was sent to you because you are a
Member of the DEP Public Notice mailing list.
Thursday, February 14, 2019 @ 3:56 PM


Notice of Intent to Approve 

On August 6, 2018 (and as resubmitted on January 16, 2019), Blue Racer
Midstream, LLC applied to the WV Department of Environmental Protection,
Division of Air Quality (DAQ) for a permit to modify the Natrium Extraction and
Fractionation Plant located at 14787 Energy Road, Proctor, Marshall County, WV
(26055) at latitude 39.75996 and longitude -80.86101.  A preliminary evaluation
has determined that all State and Federal air quality requirements will be met
by the proposed modification.  The DAQ is providing notice to the public of its
preliminary determination to issue the permit as Permit Number R13-2896F.

The following potential increases in emissions will be authorized by this
permit action: Carbon Monoxide, 102.04 tons per year (TPY), Oxides of Nitrogen,
109.94 TPY, Particulate Matter less than 2.5 microns, 10.57 TPY; Particulate
Matter less than 10 microns, 17.45 TPY; Particulate Matter, 38.47 TPY; Sulfur
Dioxide, 0.84 TPY; Volatile Organic Compounds, 313.68 TPY; and total Hazardous
Air Pollutants, 13.89 TPY.

Written comments or requests for a public meeting must be received by the DAQ
before 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 20, 2019.  A public meeting may be held if
the Director of the DAQ determines that significant public interest has been
expressed, in writing, or when the Director deems it appropriate.

The purpose of the DAQ’s permitting process is to make a preliminary
determination if the proposed modification will meet all state and federal air
quality requirements.  The purpose of the public review process is to accept
public comments on air quality issues relevant to this determination.  Only
written comments received at the address noted below within the specified time
frame, or comments presented orally at a scheduled public meeting, will be
considered prior to final action on the permit.  All such comments will become
part of the public record.

Joe Kessler, PE
WV Department of Environmental Protection
Division of Air Quality
601 57th Street, SE
Charleston, WV  25304
Telephone:  304/926-0499, ext. 1219
FAX:  304/926-0478

**You can also email comments and requests to Joe Kessler at Please put the permit number R13-2896F in the subject line of your email.

The yellow pins represent approximate locations of the proposed PTTG Ethane Cracker and Mountaineer Storage Facility, plus the Natrium Plant along the Ohio River.

Link to OVEC's final letter to membersFeb 14 2022  Newsletter
Final Newsletter
OVEC's special collection libraryNov 18 2021  Hoots and Hollers
OVEC Closing Doors
Nov 9 2021  Action Alert
Speak Up, Learn Up, and Log Out
Nov 4 2021  Hoots and Hollers
OVEC Co-Directors Tonya Adkins and Vivian Stockman Retiring

The Author

Dustin White

Dustin White is a project coordinator with OVEC and a lifelong WV resident. Dustin grew up in the so called “coalfields” of Southern WV where he has deep multi-generational roots and now lives in Charleston WV. His work with OVEC started as a volunteer, fighting the extreme form of coal mining known as mountaintop removal and other coal mining related issues, lobbying for new state cemetery protection laws, and more. Now, on staff, Dustin’s work focuses on stopping the new threat of the petrochemical monstrosity known as the Appalachian Storage and Trading Hub in the Ohio Valley/Appalachian region. Dustin hopes to one day see a Appalachia where the people and places he love are no longer exploited and sacrificed for the fossil fuel industry’s short-term profit.


  1. Please grant a public hearing on Natrium Fractionation plant air permit. Keep WV air clean.

    1. Thanks Terry. Be sure to ask DEP directly/

    2. Hi Terry, we got word that you can email the DEP your request to Joe Kessler at Please put the permit number R13-2896F in the subject line of your email.

  2. A public hearing should be required and should not have to be asked for. We the people make up this great State. Stop raping us of our resources and selling us short! No wonder this great State is the 49th in the country!

    1. Thanks Tanya. Please make sure these comments get to DEP.

    2. Hi Tanya, thank you so much for your comment. If you’d like, you can email the DEP your request for a public hearing to Joe Kessler at Please put the permit number R13-2896F in the subject line of your email.

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