Hyperion Misses Required Deadline to Break Ground on Oil Refinery
Hyperion Energy Center proposed an enormous oil refinery in elk Point, South Dakota, west of Sioux City, Iowa. A requirement of the air permit was that construction was to begin on or before March 15, 2013. Hyperion missed that deadline. Hyperion planned to refine sour crude that was extracted from the tar sands in Canada. The refining process creates significant air pollution. The prevailing winds would blow those pollutants into Iowa, targeting Sioux City and the neighboring Loess Hills. The Iowa Chapter was also concerned about discharges of water into the Missouri River, including the effect on water temperature, pollutants entering the water and the effect on fish. The Missouri River and Big Sioux River are an important migration flyway for birds. Hyperion allowed the options to purchase the land to expire in the fall of 2012.
Habitat in the Loess Hills will be negatively impacted by the pollution emitted by the Hyperion Refinery.
Loess Hills cat steps
Read stories of individuals from the US and Canada impacted by tar sands.
Learn more about the oil industry's plants for a massive project to export millions of barrels more per day of dirty tar sands oil from Alberta, Canada to the United States
Read reports, look at photographs, find fact sheets, maps and take action.
Chapter Meets with EPA
Iowa Chapter representatives met with EPA Region VII air quality and water quality staff on June 22, 2011. Chapter representatives dialogued with EPA staff about the Chapter's concerns regarding the proposed Hyperion refinery. Read the Chapter's presentation.
The directors of the Iowa DNR and the Iowa Department of Economic Development contacted the administrator of EPA Region VII wanting the Chapter's presentation changed to clarify that the EPA had nothing to do with preparing the presentation Chapter representatives made in June 2011 about the Hyperion refinery project. See the Chapter's response.
Iowa Chapter Information Documents:
(all are pdfs and available to download)
South Dakota Department of Environment and Natural Resources has been monitoring the Hyperion site to get background information and installing test locations for permanent monitoring. See the monitors map.
air monitors are not set to evaluate the air emissions in the strongest
prevailing wind direction. The
prevailing winds are strongest from the northwest.
That puts Sioux City as the target for the emissions.
State University’s Department of Agronomy Iowa Environmental Mesonet
has studied wind direction around Sioux City for more than 60 years.
Windrose Plot indicates the average prevailing winds in and around Sioux
Average monthly Windrose Plots from January 31, 1948, through
September 9, 2010, are also available.
Iowa State University’s Department of Agronomy Iowa Environmental Mesonet has studied wind direction around Sioux City for more than 60 years. The Windrose Plot indicates the average prevailing winds in and around Sioux City. Average monthly Windrose Plots from January 31, 1948, through September 9, 2010, are also available.
A special thank you to the volunteers who have worked on the Hyperion refinery issue and assisted in preparing materials including Jim Redmond, Jane Clark, Ginger Soelberg, Pam Mackey-Taylor and Charlie Winterwood. I appreciate their work on this project.
~Neila Seaman, Director
DNR Director Writes to South Dakota Department of Environment & Natural Resources Director
In July 2010, Iowa DNR Director Richard Leopold sent a letter to his counterpart in South Dakota asking the neighboring state to take consideration of a list of recommendations. Read Rich's letter.
In August 2010, South Dakota wrote back to the Iowa DNR. Read South Dakota's response.
From the Sioux City Journal:
"Hyperion: Why take the risk?" -- February 14, 2010
"Decision on air-quality permit expected Thursday: Hyperion in the balance" -- August 16, 2009
"Hyperion's impact? It's personal" -- April 6, 2008
From Circle of Blue: