Search

EPA Enforcement Roundup: Week of 1/17

Posted on 1/17/2022 by Lauren Scott

Industrial facilities in the United States are subject to complex, overlapping environmental regulations concerning 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 (and growing every year).

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 railcar servicer
WHERE: Omaha, NE
WHAT: RCRA violations
HOW MUCH: $21,000

On April 14, 2015, workers were inside and on top of a rail tanker car, removing petroleum residue from inside the tank, when flammable gases in the tanker car ignited and exploded. Two workers died and another was injured in the blast. According to court documents, the company failed to test for benzene and explosive gas levels prior to sending two employees to the car. A third employee pulled bucket loads of waste up through the top hatch and dumped them into a regular dumpster to be taken to a municipal landfill, even though the residue was hazardous waste.

The railcar cleaner allegedly failed to implement worker safety standards, mishandled hazardous wastes violating the RCRA, and knowingly submitted false documents to OSHA during inspections. The company will serve five years of probation and will pay a $21,000 fine for the environmental and worker safety violations.
 

WHO: A regional power company
WHERE: Greensburg, PA
WHAT: Clean Water Act violations
HOW MUCH: $610,000

A Pennsylvania power company agreed to pay a civil penalty to resolve alleged water discharge violations at two coal ash impoundment landfills. According to the settlement, the company exceeded boron limits in discharges from the Mingo Landfill in Union Township and Springdale Landfill in Frazer Township.

The company will take steps to ensure continued compliance by constructing new gravity pipelines to new outfall locations in Peters Creek and Allegheny River and collect data on instream boron levels in Peters Creek.
 

WHO: A scrap metal recycling facility
WHERE: Houston, TX
WHAT: Clean Air Act violations
HOW MUCH: $442,500

EPA filed a consent decree alleging that a recycling facility failed to recover refrigerant from appliances and motor vehicle air conditioners before disposal or verify with the supplier that the refrigerant had been properly recovered prior to delivery. Under the settlement, the company will prevent the release of refrigerants and non-exempt substitutes during item processing and disposal.

The company must also implement a Refrigerant Recovery Management Program at its 10 facilities, reject any appliance or vehicle where there is evidence of unlawful refrigerant venting, and complete an environmental mitigation project. The project involves the destruction of all R-12 refrigerant collected at company facilities.
 

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 

Tags: Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, environmental compliance, EPA, EPA Enforcement Roundup, hazardous waste management, RCRA, roundup

Find a Post

Compliance Archives

Lion - Quotes

I will never go anywhere, but to Lion Technology.

Dawn Swofford

EHS Technician

Excellent job. Made what is very dry material interesting. Thoroughly explained all topics in easy-to-understand terms.

David Hertvik

Vice President

Lion's training was by far the best online RCRA training I've ever taken. It was challenging and the layout was great!

Paul Harbison

Hazardous Waste Professional

The instructor was very very informative, helpful, understandable and pleasant. This course answered many questions I had, being new to this industry.

Frances Mona

Shipping Manager

I have over 26 years of environmental compliance experience, and it has been some time since I have attended an environmental regulations workshop. I attended this course as preparation for EHS Audits for my six plants, and it was exactly what I was looking for.

Frank Sizemore

Director of Regulatory Affairs

The instructor made the class enjoyable. He presented in a very knowledgeable, personable manner. Best class I've ever attended. Will take one again.

John Nekoloff

Environmental Compliance Manager

Lion is at the top of the industry in compliance training. Course content and structure are updated frequently to make annual re-training enjoyable. I like that Lion has experts that I can contact for 1 year after the training.

Caroline Froning

Plant Chemist

I had a positive experience utilizing this educational program. It was very informative, convenient, and rewarding from a career perspective.

John Gratacos

Logistics Manager

Convenient; I can train when I want, where I want.

Barry Cook

Hazmat Shipping Professional

The price was reasonable, the time to complete the course was manageable, and the flexibility the online training allowed made it easy to complete.

Felicia Rutledge

Hazmat Shipping Professional

Download Our Latest Whitepaper

A guide to developing standard operating procedures, or SOPs, that help you select, manage, and audit your hazmat agents and contractors.

Latest Whitepaper

By submitting your phone number, you agree to receive recurring marketing and training text messages. Consent to receive text messages is not required for any purchases. Text STOP at any time to cancel. Message and data rates may apply. View our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.