American Iron & Metal in Saint John gets approval to operate

The Department of Environment and Local Government has granted approval for American Iron and Metal (AIM) in Saint John to operate for six months.

The approval to operate requires AIM to continue to work on monitoring and mitigating issues of concern for the public, including noise, dust, explosions and surface water runoff.

"We are listening to the concerns of Saint John residents," said Environment and Local Government Minister Jeff Carr. "It was a collaborative effort. The company has made progress in the past six months and we will continue to hold it accountable.''

The province says one of the main concerns expressed by area residents in the past has been noise created by explosions in the shredder.

Under the last amended order, the company had to shut down operations if an explosion exceeded a sound level of 109 A-weighted decibels (dBA), report the issue to government and the Saint John Fire Department and could not resume operations until all issues were resolved to the satisfaction of environment and fire department officials.

According to a press release, the new approval to operate lowers that sound threshold to 104 dBA.

Some of the other conditions in the new approval to operate include requirements to:
- monitor fine particulate matter concentrations in ambient air and determine the chemical composition of the fine particulate matter;
- continue with the noise assessment study;
- continue implementation of the action items from the surface water runoff assessment study;
- conduct audits at the sites of the suppliers to prevent receiving explosive materials at the AIM facility;

The approval is effective today and runs until the end of November.