Steel Mills

Nucor Suit Against Big River Steel is Dismissed

Written by Sandy Williams

A federal judge on Wednesday dismissed Nucor’s lawsuit against future competitor Big River Steel. U.S. District Judge Leon Holmes said Nucor’s citizen lawsuit is not authorized under the Clean Air Act and the court has no jurisdiction over the case.

Nucor argued that Big River steel was violating emission standards by constructing the mill without a valid permit. A claim that Big River countered by arguing it does have a permit and it cannot be violating emissions because the mill is still under construction and not operational.

Holmes said that Nucor could not use the court to bypass permissions to build already authorized by Arkansas state regulators.

The decision was welcome news for Big River Steel which issued the following statement.

“Big River Steel is pleased by the decision of the federal district court to dismiss Nucor Steel-Arkansas’ and Nucor Yamato Steel Company’s (“Nucor”) legal challenge to the Big River Steel project that is currently under construction in Arkansas. As Big River Steel has previously stated, Nucor’s ongoing legal challenges aimed at preventing a competitor from entering the market is an abuse of the legal system.

Given that Nucor is the largest steel producer in North America with almost 25% of the steel production capacity, Big River Steel continues to wonder why Nucor is spending so much time and energy trying to prevent a company that will represent less than 1.5% of the North American steel production from entering the market. In some sense, Nucor’s efforts are a validation of the future success Big River Steel is likely to have.

Big River Steel’s construction efforts are well underway with hundreds of millions of dollars spent and hundreds of construction jobs created.”

Construction on Big River Steel commenced in September 2014 and is still on schedule for start up in late spring in 2016.

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