Here’s why permit was suspended for Orange Grove waste disposal site

Blackhorn Environmental LLC. in Jim Wells County.

Operations at a waste disposal facility in Orange Grove have been halted after its permit was suspended related to claims it accepted unauthorized waste.

A recent audit revealed that Blackhorn Environmental Services accepted waste it was not authorized to take including non-RCRA exempt wastes and wastes from commercial operators without the required testing. 

RCRA is the acronym for the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, a federal law that regulates the management of hazardous waste, non-hazardous wastes, medical wastes, and underground storage tanks.

The facility’s permit to operate was suspended until further notice.

 Blackhorn Environmental specializes in the handling and disposal of non-hazardous oil and gas waste. The company is regulated through the Texas Railroad Commission and serves the big players in the industry.

Beginning in January of 2020, Blackhorn began receiving waste from Valicor Environmental Services LLC Waste Hauler Yard, located on County Road 46 in Robstown. The report states that the wastes generated by Valicor are not wastes under the jurisdiction of the permit issued by the Railroad Commission (RRC). To date, Blackhorn has accepted over 644 loads of waste from Valicor, including additional waste from additional unpermitted sites. 

Blackhorn Environmental Services

Blackhorn Environmental Services has been under scrutiny for the past year involving multiple complaints by residential neighbors that live close to the facility. Multiple neighbors close to the site have spoken out about foul orders, poor air quality resulting in health issues and safety concerns involving the large truck traffic in regards to weight and speed.

“This is a serious problem,” said neighbor Jennifer Green. “How can every neighbor close to the waste plant have the exact same symptoms of illness? We wake up to sour-smelling odors, we get sick, our kids get sick and we all have the same symptoms.” 

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