Every day, facilities across the US receive Notices of Violation from US EPA for alleged noncompliance with a wide variety of programs like the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts; chemical management and reporting regulations (TSCA, EPCRA, CERCLA, etc.); hazardous waste management and disposal standards (RCRA); and much more.
Below are examples of recent EPA enforcement actions that provide insight into how and why EPA issues civil penalties to facilities for environmental noncompliance. Names of companies and individuals cited by EPA are withheld to protect their privacy.
WHO: A fertilizer manufacturer
WHERE: Rock Springs, WY
WHAT: RCRA and EPCRA violations
HOW MUCH: $775,000 plus nearly $20 million in site improvements
EPA alleges a Wyoming fertilizer manufacturer
failed to properly identify and manage certain waste streams as hazardous wastes and failed to report certain quantities of toxic chemicals in accordance with RCRA and EPCRA regulations respectively.
Under the settlement, the company agrees to implement specific waste management measures valued at nearly $20 million. These measures include extensive new efforts to recover and reuse the phosphate content within wastes and avoid their disposal in the gypstack. The settlement also includes a detailed plan setting the terms for the future closure and long-term care of the gypstack
WHO: An egg processing facility
WHERE: David City, NE
WHAT: Clean Water Act violations
HOW MUCH: $827,500 plus approximately $2 million in site improvements
An egg processing facility reached an agreement with EPA to resolve alleged violations of the Clean Water Act. Federal environmental officials allege the facility discharged ammonia and other pollutants
in excess of Federal and State limits into Keysor Creek via the David City wastewater treatment system, in multiple instances since 2014.
The egg processor has agreed to spend about $2 million in upgrades to reduce the amount of pollutants the facility sends to the local wastewater treatment system. The company will also help pay for upgrades to the wastewater treatment facility to adequately treat the facility’s wastewater, and will increase the frequency of its pollutant monitoring and reporting.
WHO: A non-profit ski and recreation area
WHERE: Boise, ID
WHAT: Clean Water Act violations
HOW MUCH: $52,680
A not-for-profit ski area about 16 miles northwest of Boise, Idaho has been cited for alleged violations of the Clean Water Act, including deficiencies in Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP)
and Site Map, failure to conduct required inspections, and improperly installed and maintained “Best Management Practices.”
EPA has issued an Expedited Settlement Agreement, in which the non-profit organization agreed to pay a five-figure settlement to resolve the alleged violations.
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