EPA Fast-Tracks Five Chemicals in New TSCA

October 17, 2016

EPA is taking swift steps to carry out requirements in the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act to reform the Toxic Substances Control Act and to reduce exposure to certain persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic (PBT) chemicals.

“The threats from persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic chemicals are well-documented,” said Jim Jones, assistant administrator in EPA’s office of chemical safety and pollution prevention. “The new law directs us to expedite action to reduce risks for these chemicals, rather than spending more time evaluating them. We are working to ensure the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety Act signed in June of this year delivers on the promise of better protecting the environment and public health as quickly as possible.”

The five chemicals to receive expedited action are:

  • Decabromodiphenyl ethers (DecaBDE), used as a flame retardant in textiles, plastics and polyurethane foam
  • Hexachlorobutadiene (HCBD), used in the manufacture of rubber compounds and lubricants and as a solvent
  • Pentachlorothio-phenol (PCTP), used as an agent to make rubber more pliable in industrial uses
  • Tris (4-isopropylphenyl) phosphate, used as a flame retardant in consumer products and other industrial uses
  • 2,4,6-Tris(tert-butyl)phenol, used as a fuel, oil, gasoline or lubricant additive

The statutory deadline for EPA to propose action is June 22, 2019.

The new law gave manufacturers an opportunity to request by September 19, 2016, that EPA conduct risk evaluations for the PBT chemicals on EPA’s 2014 Work Plan, as an alternative to expedited action. Requests for risk evaluations were made for two chemicals that can be used in fragrance mixtures.

For the remaining PBT chemicals, EPA must move ahead to take expedited action to reduce exposure to those chemicals to the extent practicable. After EPA finishes identifying where these chemicals are used and how people are exposed to them, the Agency will move directly to propose limitations on their use.

PBT chemicals are of particular concern because they remain in the environment for significant periods of time and concentrate in the organisms exposed to them. These pollutants can transfer among air, water, and land, and span boundaries of geography and generations.

The new amendments to TSCA will help bring significant improvements to public health as EPA continues to take the steps necessary for its successful implementation.

Mobile RCRA and DOT Training

Register for Hazardous Waste Management: The Complete Course and DOT Hazardous Materials Training: The Complete Course in Mobile, AL, on October 25–27 and save $100. To take advantage of this offer, click here or call 800-537-2372.

Atlanta RCRA and DOT Update, IATA, and SARA Training

Register for RCRA Hazardous Waste and DOT Hazardous Materials Update and Refresher Training in Atlanta, GA, on November 1 and get your RCRA and DOT refresher training in one day. Learn how to prepare dangerous goods for shipment by air at Transportation of Dangerous Goods: Compliance with IATA Regulations on November 2. The SARA Title III Workshop on November 3 will prepare you to comply with EPCRA requirements. To register for these courses, click here or call 800-537-2372.

San Diego Hazardous Waste and DOT Training

Register for Hazardous Waste Management in California and DOT Hazardous Materials Training: The Complete Course in San Diego, CA, on November 1–3 and save $100. To take advantage of this offer, click here or call 800-537-2372.

EPA Proposes Uniform National Discharge Standards for Vessels of the Armed Forces

The Clean Water Act requires EPA and the Department of Defense to develop a set of national performance standards for discharges incidental to the normal operation of military vessels in order to better protect the environment. EPA and DoD are proposing discharge performance standards for 11 types of discharges, including standards for deck runoff, gray water, and submarine bilge water. The discharges have the potential to introduce oil, metals, organics, and aquatic nuisance species into inland, coastal, and ocean waters. These standards would apply to approximately 6,000 vessels of the Armed Forces operating in U.S. inland waters, the territorial seas, and the contiguous zone. EPA is requesting public comments on this proposed action within 60 days upon publication in the Federal Register.

The current set of proposed discharge standards continues EPA and DoD’s efforts to establish performance standards for 39 types of discharges that EPA and DoD determined require control. In February 2014, EPA and DoD proposed standards for 11 discharges. In this action, EPA and DoD are proposing standards for 11 additional types of discharges.

Changes in the 2017 IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations

The 58th edition of the IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations (DGR) was just published and becomes effective on January 1, 2017. The updated DGR incorporates all amendments made by the ICAO Dangerous Goods Panel in developing the content of the 2017–2018 edition of the ICAO Technical Instructions as well as changes adopted by the IATA Dangerous Goods Board.

The following are just some of the changes in the new DGR. Copies of the DGR can be purchased directly from IATA or from Environmental Resource Center. Learn more about how to comply with the latest IATA regulations by attending Environmental Resource Center's IATA Training.



DGR Section

2017 58th Edition Change

1.2.7.5

A new exception has been added to address dangerous goods fitted on aircraft equipped for search and rescue to allow the dangerous goods to remain on the aircraft for other flights such as training and positioning flights.

1.2.8.2

A new paragraph clarifies that dangerous goods accepted under the provisions of regulations in force at the time of acceptance by the initial operator can continue to destination even if the regulations applicable to the dangerous goods have changed while the dangerous goods are still in transport, e.g., dangerous goods accepted at the end of December can continue in transport in January even if new provisions affecting these dangerous goods have become effective as of 1 January.

1.4

Requirements related to the provision of information to passengers in 1.4.3 have been revised to allow for operators to develop a performance-based notification system to advise passengers that reflect the operator's own capabilities and operation. Details of this notification system must be documented in the operator's operations, or other applicable manual.

1.5.1

“Training Programmes” has been renamed “Dangerous Goods Training Programmes” and a new 1.5.1.2—Review and Approval has been added. The new paragraph replaces the existing 1.5.5—Approval.

1.6

A new paragraph specifies what should be established by shippers of Section II lithium batteries to meet the conditions for “adequate instruction” of employees who are responsible for the preparation of packages of lithium batteries offered for air transport in accordance with Section II of the lithium battery packing instructions.

2.6.5

The packing provisions have been revised to allow for the absorbent material to be either in the intermediate packaging, or the outer packaging for liquid dangerous goods in excepted quantities.

2.8

Additions, deletions, and amendments to variations submitted by operators.

3.0.1.5

A new paragraph specifies the provisions for where a shipper identifies, by testing, that a listed substance has a subsidiary hazard not identified in the list of dangerous goods. The new provision states that the shipper must, with the approval of the appropriate national authority, either use an “n.o.s.” entry or ship the substance under the listed entry with the addition of the subsidiary hazard.

3.1.8

Recommendations have been added that the competent authority responsible for the classification of explosives should provide in writing the details of the classification as specified.

3.2.6, 3.3.6, 3.6.1.9, 3.8.4

New provisions have been added to address substances in Class 2, Class 3, Division 6.1, and Class 8 that may polymerize during normal conditions of transport.

3.4.1.4

Provisions have been added for the classification of polymerizing substances. The provisions are analogous to those for self-reactive substances.

3.6.2.6

The classification requirements for infected live animals have been revised.

4.2

Amendments to the List of Dangerous Goods include:

  • Revision to a number of the entries for aerosols to consolidate all aerosols into packing instructions 203 and Y203
  • Addition of special provision A209 against entries with “stabilized” in the proper shipping name
  • All entries of “engines” have been deleted from UN 3166. UN 3166 in Class 9 now only applies to the proper shipping names “vehicles.” Engines are now assigned to UN 3528–UN 3530 in Division 2.1, Class 3 or Class 9, based on the classification of the fuel that powers the engine. Also assigned to UN 3528–UN 3530 are proper shipping names for “machines,” which are also based on the classification of the fuel used to power the machines
  • UN 3480, Lithium ion batteries has been amended to show “forbidden” across columns I/J to identify that these batteries are now restricted to Cargo Aircraft Only. This change became effective 1 April 2016, through an addendum to the 57th edition of the DGR. There is no change to the entries for UN 3481, lithium ion batteries packed with equipment or lithium ion batteries contained in equipment
  • All entries for lithium batteries, UN 3090, UN 3091, UN 3480, and UN 3481 have been revised to identify that the hazard label has changed to now be the lithium battery Class 9 label. A new Special Provision A206 has also been assigned to reinforce this new requirement
  • UN 3269, Polyester resin kit has been revised to add “liquid base material” as light type and a new entry “UN 3527, Polyester resin kit, solid base material” in Division 4.1 has been added to provide for polyester resin kits that have a Division 4.1 solid material as the base component
  • Four new entries, UN 3531–UN 3534 have been added for polymerizing substances
  • The entries UN 2977, Radioactive material, uranium hexafluoride fissile and UN 2978, Radioactive material, uranium hexafluoride, non-fissile or fissile excepted have now been assigned a subsidiary risk of Division 6.1 in addition to Class 8
  • UN 3507, Uranium hexafluoride, radioactive material, excepted package, less than 0.1 kg per package, non-fissile or fissile-excepted, has been revised to now be assigned to Division 6.1 with subsidiary risks of Class 7 and Class 8. The packing instruction assigned is now PI 603.

4.4

Special Provisions:
A21 and A134—Have been revised to address the changes to UN 3166 and the new entries for engines and

machinery.

A38—Revised to remove reference to polymeric beads.

A66—Revised to include reference to the polyester resin kits in Division 4.1.

A88—Which applies to prototype or small production run lithium cells and batteries has been revised to now refer to PI 910 in the Supplement to the ICAO Technical Instructions.

A104—Which was assigned to UN 1230, Methanol, and which allowed packages containing methanol to not bear a Toxic hazard label, been deleted. All packages containing methanol must now bear a Division 6.1 hazard label in addition to the Class 3 label.

A112—Revised to identify that ID 8000, Consumer commodity can now also include aviation regulated substances, UN 3334 and UN 3335.

A181—Revised to more clearly describe the requirements for packages that contain both lithium batteries packed with equipment and lithium batteries contained in equipment.

A202—New special provision assigned to a number of entries for Division 2.2 gases to set out provisions for radiation detectors containing these Division 2.2 gases.

A204—New special provision assigned to Polymeric beads that identifies under what circumstances polymeric beads can be considered to be non-dangerous goods.

A211—New special provision assigned against the entries UN 1067, Nitrogen dioxide and UN 1660, Nitric oxide, compressed to provide for sterilization devices that incorporate these substances. When in such sterilization devices these substances may be shipped on passenger or cargo aircraft.

A212—New special provision assigned against the entry UN 2031, Nitric acid, other than red fuming, with more than 20% and less than 65% nitric acid, to provide for sterilization devices that incorporate this substance. When in such sterilization devices this substance may be shipped on passenger aircraft.

A302 and A324—Revised to remove the requirement for the appropriate national authority of the State of destination to also approve the carriage of fish bins with oxygen or ceremonial flames.

A331—New special provision assigned against UN 3480, Lithium ion batteries to identify the possible requirements for a shipper to meet to obtain an approval to ship lithium ion batteries at a state of charge in excess of 30% of the rated capacity of the battery.

5.0.1.3

Dangerous goods in unit load devices and freight containers. Revised to allow for unit load devices (ULD) that contain UN 3373 or ID 8000 to also contain dry ice as a refrigerant.

5.0.1.12

New provisions allow, with the approval of the authorities of the States of origin and of the operator, for the use of UN specification large packagings for articles that weigh in excess of 400 kg.

Packing Instructions

PI 200—Revised to include new provisions for liquefied gases charged with a compressed gas to require the shipper to take both components into account when calculating the internal pressure in the cylinder. There are also additional provisions to require that shippers when charging cylinders must use qualified staff.

PI 203 and PI Y203—These packing instructions have been revised to incorporate the provisions in PI 204, PI Y204, and PI 212. These packing instructions have now been deleted.

PI 218—Applicable to chemicals under pressure has been revised to include new provisions for liquids charged with a compressed gas to require the shipper to take both components into account when calculating the internal pressure in the cylinder.

PI 220—New packing instruction for engines and machinery powered by a flammable gas.

PI 378—New packing instruction for engines and machinery powered by a flammable liquid.

PI 450 and PI Y450—New packing instructions for polyester resin kits that have a solid base material classified in Division 4.1. These packing instructions mirror PI 370 and PI Y370, which apply to polyester resin kits with a flammable liquid base.

PI 459—Revised to include polymerizing substances (UN 3531 and UN 3532) with self-reactive substances.

PI 603—New packing instruction for UN 3507, Uranium hexafluoride, radioactive material, excepted package, which is now classified with a primary hazard of Division 6.1. Consequently PI 877 has been deleted.

PI 950 and PI 951—Revised to remove provisions for engines.

PI 954—Revised to include allowance for UN 3373, Biological substance, Category B and ID 8000, Consumer commodity to be in a shipper loaded unit load device with the dry ice.

PI 965—PI 970—Section IB of PI 965 and PI 968 and Section II of all of the lithium battery packing instructions have been revised to remove reference to the need for an additional document to accompany consignments of Section II lithium batteries. As of 1 January 2017, this document is no longer required. The lithium battery handling label, which is required on packages, has been replaced by a new lithium battery mark. The dimensions and color of the new lithium battery mark are the same as for the lithium battery handling label, but all words have been removed and the UN number(s) is required to be applied. There is a 2-year transition period until 31 December 2018, to allow shippers to implement the lithium battery mark.

PI 972—Is a new packing instruction added for engines and machinery powered by a fuel classified only as environmentally hazardous.

6.4.2

Revised to include a reference to new ISO standards and also to identify the period during which the ISO standards may be applied for manufacture and also after which time the standards may no longer be used.

7

There are numerous editorial amendments to change the word “marking” or “markings” to read “mark” or “marks.” This reflects the correct English usage where what is applied to a package is a “mark,” whereas “marking” is the act of applying the mark. (this is our favorite change in the DGR)

7.1.5.5

New provisions that set out the requirements for the lithium battery mark. The specification of the lithium battery mark is shown as Figure 7.1.C. The new mark comes into effect as of 1 January 2017, with a 2-year transition period during which time either the lithium battery mark or the lithium battery handling label may be applied to packages containing lithium batteries prepared in accordance with Section IB or Section II of the lithium battery packing instructions.

7.2.4.4

The provisions on additional text on hazard labels have been revised to identify that for the new Class 9–Lithium Battery hazard label the only information permitted in the bottom half of the label is the pictogram and the class number.

7.3.18

The specification of the new Class 9–Lithium Battery hazard label has been added as a new Figure 7.3.X. The new hazard label comes into effect as of 1 January 2017, with a 2-year transitional period during which time either the existing Class 9–Miscellaneous Dangerous Goods hazard label or the new Class 9–Lithium Battery hazard label may be applied to packages containing lithium batteries prepared in accordance with Section I, IA, or IB of the lithium battery packing instructions.

8.1.6.9.1

A note has been added to identify that notwithstanding the change to the UN numbers and division/class for “engines,” that shippers may still consign engines as UN 3166 in Class 9 until 31 March 2017.

8.1.6.9.2

Clarification has been added on how the identification number for multiple overpacks should be shown.

8.1.6.9.4

The list of special provision numbers that are required to be shown in the “authorizations” area of the Shipper's Declaration has been revised.

8.1.6.11.7

The paragraph identifying that for shipments of lithium batteries prepared under Section IB of PI 965 and PI 968 that the information required on the additional document may be included on the Shipper's Declaration or may be on an additional document has been deleted as the additional document is no longer required.

8.1.6.13, 8.1.6.14

Have each been revised to remove the mandatory requirement for title of the signatory and the place that the Shipper's Declaration was signed. This information may still be provided, but is no longer mandatory.

9

Notes have been added under 9.0 to reference Annex 19–Safety Management Systems and the ICAO Safety Management Manual. All operators are required to implement a Safety Management System (SMS) and the carriage of dangerous goods is included within the scope of the operator's SMS.

9.1.3.2

A new paragraph has been added to require that the operator must be able to identify the person who performed the acceptance check.

9.1.4.1

The provisions for acceptance of a shipper loaded unit load device (ULD) containing dry ice have been revised to also allow UN 3373 or ID 8000 to be in the ULD with dry ice.

9.1.9

A new paragraph has been added recommending that operators conduct a safety risk assessment for the transport of dangerous goods.

9.5.1.1.3

The information required on the written information to the pilot-in-command (NOTOC) has been revised to clarify that for ID 8000 the gross weight of each package may be the average gross weight when this is what has been declared on the Shipper's Declaration.

9.6.2

The reporting of dangerous goods in passenger baggage by operator has been revised to limit the submission of reports by the operator to those where the dangerous goods have been discovered by the operator, or the operator has been advised by the entity that discovered the dangerous goods, e.g., security screeners.

9.8.2

The acceptance checklist retained on file must now include identification of the person who performed the acceptance check.

Appendix A

There are a number of changes and additions to the defined terms in the glossary. These include:

  • Addition of a definition for “design life” for composite cylinders
  • New definition for “self-accelerating polymerization temperature” to address the new provisions for polymerizing substances
  • New definition for “service life” for composite cylinders

Appendix C

There are revisions to the list of organic peroxides.

Appendix D

Contact details for competent authorities have been updated.

Appendix E

Changes have been made to the list of UN Specification Packaging Suppliers (E.1) and the Package Testing Facilities (E.2).

Appendix F

The list of Sales Agents (F.2), IATA Accredited Training Schools (F.3—F.5), and IATA Authorized Training Centers (F.6) have been revised.

Appendix H

A new appendix with draft changes to address the implementation of competency-based dangerous goods training.



DOT Bans All Samsung Galaxy Note7 Phones From Airplanes

DOT, with the FAA and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), announced it has issued an emergency order to ban all Samsung Galaxy Note7 smartphone devices from air transportation in the United States. Anyone who own or possess a Samsung Galaxy Note7 device may not transport the device on their person, in carry-on baggage, or in checked baggage on flights to, from, or within the United States. This prohibition includes all Samsung Galaxy Note7 devices. The phones also cannot be shipped as air cargo. The ban became effective on Saturday, October 15, 2016, at noon ET.

"We recognize that banning these phones from airlines will inconvenience some passengers, but the safety of all those aboard an aircraft must take priority,” said Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “We are taking this additional step because even one fire incident inflight poses a high risk of severe personal injury and puts many lives at risk.”

Device owners have experienced documented incidents of dangerous evolution of heat with both recalled and replacement Samsung Galaxy Note7 devices. Samsung and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) acknowledged this imminent safety hazard with the company’s September 15, 2016 and October 13, 2016 recalls. Additionally, on October 11, 2016, Samsung suspended the manufacture and sale of the Samsung Galaxy Note7 device.

“The fire hazard with the original Note7 and with the replacement Note7 is simply too great for anyone to risk it and not respond to this official recall,” said CPSC Chairman Elliot F. Kaye. “I would like to remind consumers once again to take advantage of the remedies offered, including a full refund. It’s the right thing to do and the safest thing to do.”

What you should know:

  • If you attempt to travel by air with your Samsung Galaxy Note7 devices, the phones may be confiscated and passengers may face fines.
  • Passengers who attempt to evade the ban by packing their phone in checked luggage are increasing the risk of a catastrophic incident. Anyone violating the ban may be subject to criminal prosecution in addition to fines.
  • Passengers currently traveling with Samsung Galaxy Note7 phones should contact Samsung or their wireless carrier immediately to obtain information about how to return their phones and arrange for a refund or a replacement phone. Samsung has provided guidance for customers about refund and replacement options, as well as how to contact wireless carriers, at http://www.samsung.com/us/note7recall/. Samsung is also answering customers’ questions at 1-844-365-6197.
  • If an airline representative observes that a passenger is in possession of a Samsung Note7 device prior to boarding an aircraft, the air carrier must deny boarding to the passenger unless and until the passenger divests themselves and their carry-on and checked baggage of the Samsung Galaxy Note7 device. Passengers absolutely should not pack the phones in their checked luggage.
  • If a flight crew member identifies that a passenger is in possession of a Samsung Galaxy Note7 device while the aircraft is in flight, the crew member must instruct the passenger to power off the device, not use or charge the device while aboard the aircraft, protect the device from accidental activation, including disabling any features that may turn on the device, such as alarm clocks, and keep the device on their person and not in the overhead compartment, seat back pocket, nor in any carry-on baggage, for the duration of the flight.

The Samsung Galaxy Note7 device is considered a forbidden hazardous material under the Federal Hazardous Material Regulations (49 CFR Parts 171–185), which forbid airline passengers or crew from traveling with lithium cells or batteries or portable electronic devices that are likely to generate a dangerous evolution of heat. PHMSA has issued a special permit to Samsung to facilitate commercial shipment of the recalled devices by ground transportation.

For additional information on the recall, visit the CPSC website at http://www.cpsc.gov.

For additional information on returning your recalled Galaxy Note7 device to the manufacturer, call 1-800-SAMSUNG or 1-800-726-7864 or visit the website: http://www.samsung.com/us/note7recall/

For additional information about safe travel with lithium batteries and other potentially hazardous materials, visit the DOT Safe Travel Website at http://phmsa.dot.gov/safetravel/batteries.

Additional passenger information from the FAA is available at: http://www.faa.gov/Go/PackSafe. For all other questions about the transportation of hazardous materials, contact PHMSA’s Hazardous Materials Information Center at 1-800-467-4922 or infocntr@dot.gov.

New Rule Updates Oil Spill Preparedness for Pipelines in Washington

The Washington Department of Ecology has adopted an updated rule that enhances the safety of transporting oil by pipelines in Washington.

The newly updated rule reflects the need for pipeline contingency plans to address oil spill response in marine and inland areas of Washington. The rule was previously updated 10 years ago when planning standards were only developed to align with marine terminal standards.

Contingency plans ensure that capable personnel are pre-trained and equipment and resources are pre-staged if oil spills along a pipeline route. Preparedness and planning help support responses by reducing spill impacts to public health, the environment, and cultural resources.

“We updated air monitoring requirements with the goal of protecting people and responders from harmful emissions during oil spills,” said Dale Jensen, Ecology’s spills program manager. “And we improved our spills-to-ground requirements to help improve emergency responses when spills may threaten groundwater aquifers.”

The rule also updates regulation definitions and clarifies ‘worst-case discharge’ calculations for pipelines, in line with existing federal regulations. Additionally, the updated rule ensures that our state achieves the highest protection standards by requiring best technology, staffing levels, training procedures and operational methods in contingency plans.

Washington has hundreds of miles of pipelines transporting oil through the state. The longest is the BP Olympic pipeline that spans 400 miles from Blaine to Portland, Oregon. In 2014, pipelines moved more than 7.4 billion gallons of oil, making pipelines the primary mode of oil transportation in the state.

UL Introduces SPOT™ Online Database – The Largest Credible Product Sustainability Information Tool

UL recently introduced SPOT™, a web-based product sustainability information tool that will facilitate the selection of credible green products and enable the design community to apply that information into the Building Information Modeling (BIM) workflow. Currently featuring more than 40,000 products, SPOT database will be a first of its kind tool for architects, designers and specifiers to identify products by sustainable attributes, MasterFormat product codes and building rating system credits such as LEED v4 and the WELL Building Standard™. To enhance the mobile experience, UL’s SPOT app is available from the Apple App Store and Google Play.

Additionally, UL is developing an add-in which will enable AutoDesk® Revit? users to access product data from SPOT and assign it directly to their project. This will provide unprecedented visibility into trusted green product information, enabling greater accuracy in green building reporting and certification to regional, national and international building standards.

SPOT database goes beyond traditional green certification data to include a comprehensive view of a product’s attributes through expanded product listings. The expanded listings will also include safety data, such as fire ratings and, for furniture, performance certifications and claim verifications. This data will be curated and managed by UL to give users confidence that the data is from reliable, credible sources.

“SPOT seeks to be the solution for two major challenges facing the building industry—the time required to find necessary product data in multiple locations, and help ensure that the information they find is accurate and can be trusted,” said Carlos Correia, president, UL Supply Chain & Sustainability. “We developed a comprehensive search tool that combines multiple product attributes to streamline the selection process for architects and designers, and will transform the way certification data is transferred into BIM project designs.”

SPOT database is powered by UL, a leading safety science company and developer of globally recognized sustainability standards with a 120+ year history. In 2016, UL acquired Green Wizard, a well-known product selection platform dedicated to enabling architects, engineers, and contractors to identify greener products for their projects. SPOT database will build upon that legacy by linking design applications with product information in the database.

Agri Star Meat & Poultry LLC Fined $43,000 for Industrial Stormwater Violations

EPA Region 7 has reached an administrative settlement with Agri Star Meat & Poultry, LLC, of Postville, Iowa, to resolve industrial stormwater violations under the Clean Water Act. Under the settlement, Agri Star must comply with its industrial stormwater permit and pay a penalty of $43,000.

EPA investigations in March 2015 found that Agri Star failed to comply with its industrial stormwater permit, including failure to:

  • Develop and update an adequate stormwater pollution prevention plan
  • Implement best management practices to reduce the amount of pollutants in stormwater
  • Perform facility inspections
  • Conduct annual comprehensive site compliance evaluations
  • Conduct visual stormwater monitoring
  • Conduct employee training

Under an administrative compliance order issued in August 2016, Agri Star is addressing each of the violations to bring the facility into compliance with its industrial stormwater permit. Actions detailed in the compliance order include: installing and maintaining adequate control measures and best management practices; performing site evaluations of the implemented best management practices; updating and implementing sampling procedures; conducting employee training; and updating and implementing an adequate stormwater pollution prevention plan.

Pollutants from industrial stormwater facilities, if not properly managed, can negatively impact water quality and aquatic life. Stormwater pollution from a food processing facility can include bacteria, ammonia, biochemical oxygen demand, oil and grease, and total suspended solids. The stormwater from Agri Star discharges into Hecker Creek, which is a losing stream and tributary to the Yellow River. Strong and effective stormwater controls are necessary to ensure protection of losing streams, which are vulnerable to negative water quality impacts from pollution.

The Clean Water Act seeks to protect streams and wetlands that form the foundation of our nation’s water resources, which are critical in adapting to climate change impacts like drought, stronger storms, and warmer temperatures.

“The resolution of this action highlights the need for industrial facilities to control pollutants that may come in contact with stormwater,” said Karen Flournoy, director of EPA Region 7’s Water, Wetlands and Pesticides Division. “The Clean Water Act and the industrial stormwater program require common-sense pollution prevention actions and best management practices, which include employee training, regular facility inspections, stormwater monitoring, and constructing and maintaining structural controls.”

The settlement is subject to a 40-day public comment period before it becomes final. The public comment period began September 29, 2016. Information on how to submit comments is available online.

North Cascade Road Developers LLC Violated Clean Water Act

EPA Region 7 has reached a proposed administrative settlement with North Cascade Road Developers, LLC, to resolve violations of Section 402 of the Clean Water Act (CWA) at its Timber Hyrst Estates Residential Development in Dubuque, Iowa. As part of the settlement, the company has agreed to pay a civil penalty of $50,000.

EPA conducted a stormwater inspection of the Timber Hyrst Estates Residential Development to evaluate compliance with the site’s National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NDPES) permit. EPA’s inspection identified several alleged CWA violations, including failure to develop and implement an adequate Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan, failure to install or implement adequate stormwater control measures, and failure to conduct and document self-inspections.

Failure to ensure appropriate stormwater controls at the site resulted in the migration of sediment into South Fork Catfish Creek and its tributaries. The CWA seeks to protect streams and wetlands that form the foundation of the nation’s water resources. Protecting streams and wetlands is also part of adapting to climate change impacts like drought and stronger storms. The CWA also requires construction sites to have controls in place to limit pollution discharged via stormwater into nearby waterways.

Following the inspection, North Cascade Road Developers, LLC, took actions to address and correct the identified stormwater violations. Compliance with the terms of the permit will reduce the amount of sediment that is discharged from the development site into South Fork Catfish Creek.

EPA was able to reach agreement with North Cascade Road Developers, LLC, prior to the filing of a formal administrative complaint. EPA is proposing a Consent Agreement and Final Order in settlement of this matter, which is being placed on public notice. The proposed settlement with North Cascade Road Developers, LLC, is subject to a 40-day public comment period before it becomes final. Information on how to submit comments is available online at the link provided below.

New York Companies Fined for Clean Air Act Violations

The EPA announced fines against the Finger Lakes LPG Storage, LLC, in Savona, New York, and Twin Lakes Chemical, Inc., in Lockport, New York, for Clean Air Act violations or rules governing chemical safety and risk management. Among the violations, the companies failed hazard identification and equipment safety requirements. Finger Lakes LPG agreed to pay a $154,000 penalty and Twin Lakes Chemical agreed to pay a $40,000 penalty for the violations.

“Chemical facilities are required to establish risk management plans in order to prevent and prepare for chemical accidents," said Judith A. Enck, EPA's Regional Administrator. “By taking steps, such as properly labeling chemicals, properly training employees, and providing employee emergency health care, chemical facilities can protect the communities where they are located.”

Risk management plan requirements under the Clean Air Act include developing a hazard assessment to identify potential effects of an accidental release of chemicals; an accidental release prevention program that includes safety precautions, safe operating procedures, maintenance, and employee training measures; and an emergency response program that spells out emergency health care, employee training measures and procedures for informing the public and local response agencies should an accidental release occur.

Hazardous chemicals are located in many types of facilities in our communities. Emergency responders need to know where hazardous chemicals are used and stored, how to assess the risks associated with those chemicals and how to ensure community preparedness for accidents or incidents that may occur. Many facility owners and operators rely on local resources for emergency preparedness and response, including first responders, emergency medical services, and hazardous materials response teams. It is important for local officials, first responders and facility owners and operators to work closely together to ensure chemical safety and security and the protection of local communities.

The first settlement is with Finger Lakes LPG Storage, the owner and operator of a facility that receives and stores liquefied petroleum gas for wholesale customers. The EPA identified several areas of the facility's operations that had been in violation of the Clean Air Act, including by failing to comply with hazard identification and equipment safety requirements such as updated and accurate piping and instrumentation diagrams, among other violations.

Finger Lakes LPG Storage will also spend an estimated $158,000 to purchase equipment and vehicles for three local fire departments in the area near the facility: the Savona Fire Department, the Bath Volunteer Fire Department in Steuben County, and the Watkins Glen Fire Department in Schuyler County.

The second settlement is with Twin Lakes Chemical, a chemical manufacturing plant which