A business is required to have a permit if they release pollution into the air or water or generate, store, or dispose of toxic material. The business will apply for a permit before building the facility that will release the pollutants or when modifications are made to a facility that releases pollutants. The Louisiana DEQ is tasked with analyzing, issuing and overseeing environmental permits. However it is also important for local residents to be aware of existing permitted facilities in their area as well as new permit applications. As mentioned previously, citizens have an opportunity and responsibility to participate in the permitting process. So how do you keep up with local environmental permits and what should you know about them?
TO STAY INFORMED OF PERMIT APPLICATIONS NEAR YOU:
- View all current permit applications online: http://www.deq.louisiana.gov/apps/pubNotice/default.asp
- Sign up to receive permit applications by email. You can choose to receive applications statewide or for a particular parish: http://louisiana.gov/Services/Email_Notifications_DEQ_PN/
- Sign up to receive permit applications by mail: Call LDEQ Customer Service Center at: (225) 219-LDEQ (219-5337)
Questions to keep in mind:
- How close is the facility to your community?
- What pollutants are/will be emitted?
- Will any emissions be increasing?
- How will this permit/facility affect your community?
- Would you like a public hearing about this application?
- How long do you have until the public comment period is over?
- Do you need additional help to organize the community, understand the permit application, or develop comments?
The Louisiana Citizens’ Guide To Environmental Engagement