Westminster, Mass. Facility Fined for Clean Water and Community Right-to-Know Violations
Ranor, Inc. and its owner Techprecision Corporation will pay more than $100,000 in penalties for environmental violations, in settlement of claims that their facility violated both the federal Clean Water Act and the Emergency Planning and Community Right-To-Know Act (“EPCRA”).
The facility, which produces metal products for the military, nuclear, aerospace and commercial industries, violated Clean Water requirements by discharging storm water without a permit.
Because the permitting requirements were not followed, the facility also failed to implement “best management practices” to address storm water discharges, and failed to perform required monitoring that would show the quantity of pollutants being discharged into waters of the United States.
The facility’s storm water discharges to a beaver pond and an unnamed perennial stream, which lead to other bodies of water. Activities that take place at industrial facilities, such as material handling and storage, are often exposed to the weather. As runoff from rain or snowmelt comes into contact with these materials, it picks up pollutants and transports them to nearby storm sewer systems, rivers, lakes, or coastal waters. Storm water pollution is a significant source of water quality problems for the nation’s waters.
The facility also failed to file with EPA required “Toxic Release Inventory” reporting forms for the years 2003 and 2004, as required by EPCRA, relating to the facility’s processing of nickel, chromium, and manganese. This failure to comply with chemical reporting requirements hampers the general public’s ability to obtain accurate, quantifiable data about the type and amount of pollutants being released in their neighborhoods.
The settlement includes a $90,635 penalty payment and an additional $15,000 for a supplemental environmental project to purchase chemical emergency response equipment that would be donated to the Westminster Fire Department.
“Protecting our environment is everybody’s responsibility. It’s important that people and businesses follow requirements designed to prevent pollution to our air, soil and water,“ said Robert W. Varney, regional administrator for EPA’s New England regional office. ”TRI reporting gives the public important information about which chemicals are being released in and near their communities.”
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