The pharmaceutical group announced Monday night the arrest of the production of its plant in Mourenx, which releases toxic vapor of solvents higher than the concentrations allowed have been recorded. “All the conditions regarding emission and absence of risks to employees and local residents shall be met in order for the State to authorize a recovery of the activity of the site”, have informed the ministries in a press release. “The sampling and analysis will be carried out by independent laboratories on the site and in its vicinity to be sure”, they added.
Sanofi acknowledged Monday that the toxic waste from its plant – primarily bromopropane – were found to be higher than the concentrations allowed by the ministerial order applicable operating site that manufactures the Depakine, an anti-epileptic drug. The group has, however, assured that, according to a study of the health impact, requested from an independent body and whose name has not been released to the public, the populations were not exposed to levels above the thresholds set by the French regulation”.
Sanofi notice of default in April 2018
The ministries of Health, and the ecological Transition, indicated Tuesday that the State had given formal notice to Sanofi in April 2018, by an order from the prefecture, comply with the limit values of emission of the different volatile organic compounds (VOCS) under three months, under penalty of closure.
This procedure was in response to a control of the inspection of classified facilities for the protection of the environment (ICPE), which revealed that there was an overtaking situation unacceptable discharge standards for several volatile organic compounds, and in particular for the bromopropane. “The measurement and analysis carried out immediately determined that these exceedances do not pose a hazard to residents in the short term”, according to the departments.
The plant in Mourenx is also the subject of a proceeding relating to its release to the environment of sodium valproate, the active ingredient of Depakine.