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Detroit Marathon oil refinery hit with violation notice from state environmental group

Nuisance odors early February came from Marathon plant

Michigan's environmental agency issued a violation notice to the Detroit Marathon refinery on Friday.
Michigan's environmental agency issued a violation notice to the Detroit Marathon refinery on Friday.

MICHIGAN – The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality issued a violation notice to the Marathon Oil Refinery of southwest Detroit after people complained about foul odors from its facility earlier this month. 

From Feb. 2 through Feb. 3, the MDEQ's Air Quality Division received complaints regarding nuisance odors. The state environmental group determined that the source of the odors were the result of operations at Marathon's facility. 

During an inspection and follow-up, MDEQ determined the odors were of sufficient intensity.

Residents in neighboring communities, including the south end of Dearborn and Melvindale, also complained about the foul odors from Marathon's facility. 

Marathon determined the source of the odors was a flare at the refinery not functioning properly and needing to be repaired.

A passage in the violation notice read, "In the professional judgement of AQD staff, the odors that were observed were of sufficient intensity, frequency and duration so as to constitute a violation..."

The violation notice was issued Friday to Marathon. The Marathon oil refinery is located in the 48217 ZIP code of southwest Detroit. 

Dearborn’s south end borders the 48217 ZIP code of Southwest Detroit, Michigan's most polluted area, according to University of Michigan environmental scientists. The area is in close proximity of several industrial sources.  

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