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 cement processing facility
WHERE: Ravena, NY
WHAT: Clean Water Act violations
HOW MUCH: $850,000
A cement maker announced that it has made substantial improvements to its stormwater and leachate management practices and agreed to undertake additional measures to ensure that the facility is fully compliant with the terms of its Discharge Permit
by October of 2022.
Between April 2015 and April 2021, the facility allegedly violated the effluent limitations 273 times for pollutants such as fecal coliform, suspended solids, and solids. The company also improperly used sulfuric acid and partially treated landfill leachate to tributaries of the Hudson River, such as Coeymans Creek and Hannacroix Creek, says EPA.
WHO: A logistics company
WHERE: Smithfield, RI
WHAT: EPCRA and Clean Air Act violations
HOW MUCH: $314,658
According to EPA, a New England transport and warehousing company allegedly violated chemical accident prevention regulations when it failed to properly prepare and submit EPCRA Tier II chemical inventory reports for numerous chemicals present at its facility between 2015 and 2020. EPA also alleges the company failed to submit a Clean Air Act risk management plan
and conduct a process hazard analysis for the warehouse operation.
The company has agreed to pay a civil penalty to resolve these alleged violations.
WHO: A wood preservation facility
WHERE: Salem, OR
WHAT: RCRA violations
HOW MUCH: $223,440
A wood treatment plant has been issued a civil penalty by EPA and State environmental investigators for alleged violations of hazardous waste regulations. EPA alleges the company failed to provide hazardous waste training
and conduct complete hazardous waste determinations for residues made at the facility.
EPA identified several incidents related to the alleged violations. Between 2015 and 2019, the company allegedly mistreated 1.7 million gallons of hazardous waste. EPA says two unpermitted discharges of untreated storm water were also supposedly released by the company in 2019.
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