US businesses are subject to complex, overlapping environmental regulations related to air emissions, discharges to water, hazardous waste management and disposal, oil spills, chemical management, and more. Failure to comply with all applicable US EPA requirements can result in future liability and civil penalties as high as $100,000+ per day, per violation.
The EPA enforcement actions highlighted below provide insight into how and why the Agency assesses civil penalties for environmental noncompliance.
All violations mentioned are alleged unless we indicate otherwise. We withhold the names of organizations and individuals subject to enforcement to protect their privacy.
WHO: A delivery company
WHAT: RCRA hazardous waste violations
HOW MUCH: $5.3 million
To resolve alleged hazardous waste violations at facilities across the US and Puerto Rico, a delivery company will pay $5,323,008 in civil penalties. Many of the company’s facilities generate and manage hazardous waste as large, small, and very small quantity generators, EPA says, and allegedly failed to comply with applicable requirements under RCRA.
Delivery companies can generate regulated hazardous wastes when packages containing hazardous materials are damaged, as well as during maintenance and other daily operations. The company will focus on making accurate hazardous waste determinations, filing required reports, and training personnel to achieve and maintain compliance.
WHO: An asphalt seller
WHERE: Olathe, KS
WHAT: Clean Water Act violations
HOW MUCH: $82,798
For allegedly failing to comply with certain terms of its Clean Water Act (CWA) permit, an Olathe, Kansas based paving materials company will pay $82,798 in civil penalties and resolve conditions that lead to these allegations.
EPA alleges that failures to adequately control stormwater runoff from the company’s asphalt production and demolition landfill facility led to illegal discharges into a local creek. Permitting for stormwater discharges is required for many industrial facilities under the Clean Water Act National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) program.
WHO: A home improvement TV show
WHERE: Manchester, ME
WHAT: TSCA Lead-based Paint violations
HOW MUCH: $16,500
A television show about renovating cabins has settled claims of performing five renovations without complying with the TSCA Renovation, Repair, and Painting (RRP) Rule. In addition to payment of a $16,500 civil penalty, the show will provide info about the RRP Rule during upcoming episodes and produce a podcast episode focused on lead safety.
EPA’s RRP Rule requires renovators to be certified and trained by accredited providers, and to follow specific lead-safe work practice standards.
This is not the first time a TV show has faced environmental enforcement action related to the TSCA lead-based paint regulations. A home improvement show cited for alleged TSCA violations in 2018 ran a segment about lead paint safety after taking action to comply.
Convenient, Effective Online EHS Manager Training
Managing site compliance with the many complex EPA programs that affect your business—from the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts to TSCA, EPCRA, CERCLA, and more—is a major challenge. If you’re new to the field or need an update on changing EPA rules, online training is a convenient way to quickly build in-depth expertise.
Check out the latest EPA compliance training options here:
Complete Environmental Regulations
Clean Air Act Regulations Online
TSCA Regulations Online
Clean Water Act & SDWA Regulations Online
Superfund and Right-to-Know Act Regulations Online