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The Indiana Department of Environmental Management (“IDEM”) appeals the order of the Marion Superior Court reversing the Office of Environmental Adjudication’s ruling in favor of IDEM on its claim that an electric arc furnace dust silo owned by Steel Dynamics, Inc. (“SDI”) was a hazardous waste tank subject to hazardous waste regulations. SDI cross-appeals and claims that the trial court erred in concluding that there was a genuine issue of material fact with regard to whether there had been a release of hazardous waste at the SDI facility.
Conclusion (slip op. at 10): The trial court erred in reversing the conclusion of the ELJ that the EAF dust silo was a hazardous waste tank subject to the appropriate regulations. The trial court did not err in agreeing with the ELJ that SDI was not entitled to partial summary judgment.
Key Analysis (slip op. at 8-9, 10): Because the EPA simply sets the absolute minimums that must be met, [t]he trial court erred by not accepting the reasonable interpretation of the agency charged with enforcing the statutes and regulations at issue [IDEM] . . . The inspection report clearly indicates that there was a release of the EAF dust at the SDI site. As such, the ELJ and the trial court properly denied SDI’s motion for partial summary judgment on the issue of a release.