Environmentalists will drop their battle against construction of the nation’s largest cement plant. In a deal reached yesterday, project developer Holcim Inc. agreed to pay $3m for local environmental programs in addition to providing a 2,000-acre easement around the plant near St. Louis in St. Genevieve County, Mo.
The state Land Reclamation Commission gave Holcim a 100-year surface mining permit last August, giving the company permission to mine limestone in a 1,600-acre area next to the proposed $600 million cement plant. Environmentalists had opposed the measure, saying winds would carry pollution from the plant to downtown St. Louis.
Holcim spokeswoman Nancy Tully said the settlement "was in the best interest of both parties." That agreement will include $1.8 million for land conservation and $900,000 for air quality monitoring.