Joe O'Sullivan at ThePostSD.com reports that back in October, Dakota Ethanol in Wentworth paid a $75,000 penalty to the Environmental Protection Agency for violations of the Clean Air Act. According to the EPA, Lake County's big ethanol plant emitted more volatile organic compounds than allowed, didn't do the right testing, and "failed to maintain the internal floating roof on the liquid inside several storage vessels at the plant."
The same settlement extracted $150,000 from ethanol producers Poet, James Valley, and Northern Lights for similar Clean Air Act at the Groton and Big Stone ethanol plants. Think of it as a rebate on our federal subsidies for the industry.
Now I know Dakota Ethanol was disappointed with the EPA for delaying adoption of the E-15 standard. But really, fellas, do you think breaking other EPA rules is going to encourage them to vote your way? Maybe this is why Kristi Noem was so intent on demanding the EPA administrator's resignation.
The Department of Justice has the full details of the Dakota Ethanol violations and Poet-James Valley-Northern Lights violations online.