Cargill has agreed to pay $187,500 to settle allegations that it violated the Clean Water Act (CWA) at two different large oil storage facilities.
The Environment Protection Agency (EPA) identified the lack of a response plan during 2013 site visits at facilities in Blair, Nebraska and Eddyville, Iowa.
Each site required a Facility Response Plan (FRP) because the storage capacity of its denatured ethanol tanks exceeded one million gallons.
Combined, the two facilities have a total estimated storage capacity of more than seven million gallons.
As a result of the visits, inJune 2014 Cargill submitted to EPA signed and effective FRPs.
Cargill: Pleased to resolve issue
A Cargill spokesman told FoodQualityNews.com that it was pleased to have been able to resolve the issue in a timely manner.
“Cargill continues to be a responsible steward of the environment and we take all environmental issues seriously.
“After reviewing the notice from the EPA, we further improved our facilities’ spill response capabilities and quickly implemented the facility response plans EPA sought.”
The Clean Water Act requires facilities that store large quantities of oil to develop a FRP that outlines procedures for addressing “worst-case” discharges of oil.
By being prepared and by conducting required response drills, facilities are better situated to prevent environmental harm from such releases.
Settlement protects communities
Karl Brooks, EPA Region 7 administrator, said the settlement helps protect the communities of Blair, Nebraska, and Eddyville, Iowa, if spills were to occur.
“The Clean Water Act requires large oil storage facilities to have adequate response plans to prevent a spill from turning into a large-scale environmental disaster,” he said.
“The lack of a Facility Response Plan for these facilities can have serious consequences for humans and the environment in the case of a spill.”