Doctor concerned with pending permit for fumigation plant

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NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — One fumigation plant in Wilmington will have new owners and possibly a new permit to release higher levels of a chemical. 

The company Tima Capital is seeking an ownership change for the Royal Pest Solutions facility on Sunnyvale Drive. The new owners want a Title V air permit, something one doctor said is a huge increase from what is currently being used.

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“This is totally the wrong location for this type of operation,” Dr. Robert Parr said.

Retired ER Doctor Robert Parr said he is concerned. He said if Tima Capital receives a new permit allowing the release of higher levels of the chemical Methyl Bromide in Wilmington, it would be too close for comfort.

“A Title V plant is the largest plant that can be registered through the permitting agency,” Parr said. “This would be an additional Title V plant, so that’s a huge increase from what is presently being used by this company.”

The Division of Air Quality Deputy Director said they issued a violation to the current company, Royal Pest Solutions in February for emitting more of the chemical than their permit allows.

The company has a permit to release nine tons, but they want to release up to 90 tons. Before the permit is approved Parr is hoping for more communication.

“The solution to this is the company talking to the citizens, talking to our elected officials in an open forum, everything out in the open, then we can talk and come to some kind of agreement and a solution,” Parr said.

The DAQ said there is currently not a standard for the pollutant Methyl Bromide. Parr said the effects of this chemical over time can lead to neurological issues.

WWAY reached out to Tima Capital and emailed the president of the company Timurlan Aitaly. He said in part, “Tima Capital Inc. is located in Wilmington NC.  We are shipping logs to overseas markets. The company was built-in the last 3 years by experienced responsible professionals. We currently employ 25 people. All of them local citizens. We are planning and hoping to create more jobs as we grow.  At the same time, Tima’s export shipments support trucking, state port and other businesses in the community. In international trading, the requirements of the importing countries require that logs be fumigated prior to export from the United States.  China requires that only the fumigant Methyl Bromide be used on logs.  They require specific quantities based on volumes and temperature, which is monitored by the local USDA. Fumigation Permits are issued for specific locations where the actual fumigation will be done. And fumigation can only be done by licensed companies with qualified and trained personnel which are also individually licensed by the State of North Carolina. Tima, RPS and the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality, Division of Air Quality have all been in contact to make sure the regulators have all the information they need to assess the situation and issue a permit that will protect environmental and safety concerns. Tima has followed all requirements necessary as required for issuance of the permit.”

The state is accepting public comments for the permit until Sunday.