The New York state has given air and water pollution permits needed for the planned rebuilding of the Lafarge cement plant in Ravena.
The permits, issued this week by the state Department of Environmental Conservation, clear the way for Lafarge to make the switch from wet-process to dry-process technology at this 49-year-old plant.
That new plant is expected to be running by 2015; the new permits run through September 2015.
"By transforming the Ravena plant into the most advanced cement facility in New York state, we will remain competitive for the long term, protect good paying jobs, and significantly cut plant emissions," said plant manager Martin Turecky.
While cement production at the new plant is expected to increase by up to two-thirds, the amount of toxic mercury emissions are expected to drop by two-thirds, said DEC Commissioner Joe Martens.