What is EPA Doing about Pet Coke in Chicago?

A passing car shows the scale of a petroleum coke pile on Chicago's South Side.

Since late summer 2013, residents of southeast Chicago have reported windblown dust and water pollution believed to be caused by three large petroleum coke (also called pet coke or petcoke) storage and handling facilities on the Calumet River. Two are owned by KCBX Terminals, Inc., and one is owned by Beemsterboer Slag Corp.

EPA has been working closely with Illinois EPA, the Illinois Attorney General’s Office and the Chicago Department of Public Health to address residents’ concerns with windblown dust, evaluate health risks and ensure compliance with environmental regulations at these facilities.


EPA required Beemsterboer and KCBX to monitor the concentration of dust (also known as particulate matter or soot) in the air near the three petroleum coke sites. EPA will be publishing this monitoring data along with a summary of the results on this website as it becomes available.

Notices of Violation

Section 308 Information Requests

EPA is addressing petcoke discharges from vessels to the Calumet River and the surrounding Chicago waterways.  To insure that petcoke does not blow from ships and barges into waters in Chicago, EPA issued Requests for Information under the Clean Water Act (also called Section 308 information requests) which require vessels delivering petcoke to facilities in Chicago to report on efforts to control blow of petcoke from barges and ships.