Editor's note: The story has corrected the date for the public meeting to Aug. 10.

The Ohio EPA has set an August 10 public hearing to provide information and gather opinions about a controversial plan to operate a waste-to-energy conversion plant in Youngstown.

The hearing, set for 6 p.m. at the Eugenia Atkinson Recreation Center, 903 Otis Street, will discuss SOBE Thermal Energy System’s requested permit to install and operate what’s known as a “Thermolyzer” unit to process shredded automotive tires.  

According to the EPA, the process to recycle hydrocarbon waste does not use an incinerator to create a synthetic gas that will fuel two boilers at the site of the former Youngstown Thermal Plant on North Avenue that produced steam heat for downtown buildings.

The project has been met with opposition from some community members who still have concerns about the safety of the process.

The 6 p.m. informational meeting will be immediately followed by a public hearing where comments will be taken on SOBE’s draft permit-to-install and operated.

Written comments can also be submitted through August 24 by email at:

or by mail to 2110 East Aurora Road, Twinsburg, Ohio 44087.

For more information and a list of FAQs about the SOBE draft permit, click here. The draft permit is also available for review at Ohio EPA’s Northeast District Office, 2110 East Aurora Road, Twinsburg, by calling 330-963-1200 for an appointment.