$134,000 in Fines Failure to Implement Risk Management Plan and Submit Tier II Forms

April 03, 2006

The EPA filed a complaint against Altex Distributing, Inc. (Altex) in which the agency seeks a penalty for Clean Air Act and emergency planning violations. Altex is a supplier of chlorine and sulfur dioxide. The alleged violations, filed on Friday, March 24, 2006, include a failure to have a Risk Management Program (RMP) for hazardous chemicals, which is required by the Clean Air Act (CAA). EPA seeks a penalty in the amount of $67,286 under the CAA.

EPA also alleges that Altex failed to file Emergency and Hazardous Chemical Inventory Forms with emergency responders for its storage of the hazardous substances chlorine and sulfur dioxide at levels above threshold planning quantities, as required by the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA). EPA seeks an EPCRA penalty in the amount of $67,104. The total combined RMP and EPCRA penalty sought against Altex is $134,390.

The Clean Air Act, Section 112(r), requires the development of RMPs and submittal of Risk Management Plans for all public and private facilities that manufacture, process, use, store, or otherwise handle greater than a threshold amount of a regulated substances(s). Some of the toxic and flammable chemicals covered by the program are ammonia, chlorine, propane, sulfur dioxide and formaldehyde.

"Altex was operating without a Risk Management Program and without submitting inventories to the state, local emergency management or the fire department," said Kelly Huynh, EPA's RMP Coordinator. "The program and requirements were put in place to protect public health and the environment from accidental chemical releases."

The Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act is the federal law designed to both inform citizens about toxic chemicals in their communities, and protect public health and environment from toxic chemical releases by assuring that responders and planners are informed of their locations.

The RMP requires such elements as development of an emergency response strategy, evaluation of a worst case and more probable case chemical release, operator training, review of the hazards associated with using toxic or flammable substances, operating procedures and equipment maintenance. Risk Management Plans are essentially checklists that highlight the elements of the program. These plans are often used by emergency responders and planners in protecting the public from accidental chemical releases.ááá

Company to Pay $31,200 for Selling Ineffective Pesticides

The EPA has fined Grow More, Inc., of Gardena, CA, $31,200 for the alleged sale and distribution of a misbranded antimicrobial disinfectant in violation of federal pesticide law.

The EPA cited Grow More, Inc. for selling and distributing "Naccosan Concentrate Cleaner," a one-step pesticidal disinfectant designed for use in veterinary clinics and greenhouses to eliminate potentially harmful bacteria such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa. EPA's testing of Naccosan's effectiveness determined that, contrary to the claims on the disinfectant's label, Naccosan was ineffective against this microorganism.
Due to the Naccosan label's false statement of its effectiveness, Grow More, Inc. sold and distributed a misbranded pesticide in violation of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, which regulates the sale, distribution, and use of pesticides within the United States.

"Producers of antimicrobial products must ensure that their products kill all the microorganisms claimed on their product labels," said Enrique Manzanilla, the EPA's Communities and Ecosystems Division director for the EPA's Pacific Southwest Region. "Unsubstantiated label claims of effectiveness against bacteria may result in an increased risk to human health and the environment based on these false assurances."

 For antimicrobial products, the company must ensure that the pesticide is effective in meeting its labeled claims.

EPA, Corps of Engineers Move to Improve Wetlands Restoration and Conservationá

Swamps, bogs, fens, and marshes - in short, wetlands - are as vital to our environment as coral reefs and rain forests. With that in focus, the EPA and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) are proposing a new rule to ensure more effective wetlands restoration and preservation nationwide. According to EPA, the rule uses improved science and results-oriented standards to increase the quality and effectiveness of wetlands conservation practices under the Clean Water Act (CWA).

"We are accelerating the pace of wetlands restoration and conservation," said Benjamin H. Grumbles, EPA assistant administrator for Water. "Today's action which emphasizes the best available science, promotes innovation, and focuses on results will help our nation meet the President's ambitious wetlands goal, while promoting flexibility and accountability."

Because wetlands play such a critical role in the environment, a project proposed to be built in wetlands is first subject to review by the Corps and EPA under the CWA. Consistent with the goal of "no net loss of wetlands," this review often requires a developer to restore or create a wetland to replace the one that was impacted by the project.

The proposed rule:

  • Responds to recommendations of the National Research Council to improve the success of wetland restoration and replacement projects
  • Sets clear science-based and results-oriented standards nationwide while allowing for regional variations
  • Increases and expands public participation
  • Encourages watershed-based decisions
  • Affirms the "wetlands mitigation sequence" requiring that proposed projects fully avoid and minimize potential wetland impacts

The proposed rule combines accountability and flexibility.

By focusing on results and accountability, the proposed standards will improve the quality and effectiveness of wetland replacement projects. Most importantly, the proposal establishes a "level playing field" ensuring that all forms of wetlands conservation satisfy the same high environmental standards.

Increased reliance on innovative, market-based approaches is expected to promote the expansion of wetland banking, which is one of the most reliable and environmentally effective methods of wetland replacement. A wetland bank is a wetland, stream, or other aquatic resource area that has been restored and protected to offset permitted impacts to wetlands or other aquatic resources.

Wetlands provide important environmental functions including protecting and improving water quality and providing habitat to fish and wildlife. Wetlands are also critically important areas for storing floodwaters and can reduce damage from storm surges caused by hurricanes.


EPA Cites Perma-Fix for Making Unpermitted Process Modifications

EPA Region 5 has cited Perma-Fix of Dayton Inc. for alleged clean-air violations at the company's wastewater and used oil processing plant at 300 S. West End Ave., Dayton, Ohio.

EPA alleges that Perma-Fix modified its used oil operations and constructed wastewater treatment equipment without applying for the necessary air pollution control permits.

"EPA's mission is to protect public health and the environment," said Regional Administrator Thomas V. Skinner. "We will take whatever steps are needed to ensure compliance with the Clean Air Act."T

hese are preliminary findings of violations. To resolve them, EPA may issue a compliance order, assess an administrative penalty or bring suit against the company. Perma-Fix has 30 days from receipt of the notice to meet with EPA to discuss resolving the allegations.

Electroplater Will Pay for $25,000 for RCRA Violationsá

The EPA has fined the California Technical Plating Corporation of San Fernando, CA, $25,000 for violating federal hazardous waste regulations, including storing hazardous waste without a permit.

The California Technical Plating Corporation specializes in electroplating and chemical etching; the firm generates more than 1,000 kilograms of hazardous waste per month at its facility located in San Fernando, including wastewater treatment sludge, spent acids, and spent filter cartridges from cyanide tanks.

"Electroplating typically generates cadmium, chromium, and cyanide wastes," said Jeffrey Scott, director of the EPA's Waste Management Division for the Pacific Southwest region. "These wastes are highly toxic; companies must comply with EPA hazardous waste regulations in order to protect human health and prevent impacts to the environment."

In October 2002, the EPA inspected the California Technical Plating Corporation, finding the following alleged violations under the federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act:

  • Storage of hazardous waste without a permit
  • Not closing hazardous waste containers
  • Failing to provide notification or certification of hazardous debris treatment
  • Failing to inspect hazardous waste storage areas
  • Not providing a hazardous waste training program
  • Not having a complete contingency plan
  • Failing to maintain manifest records and follow-up on hazardous waste shipments

California Technical Plating Corporation has since rectified the violations.

The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act oversees how to safely manage and dispose of huge amounts of waste generated nationwide. 

Two Alaska Facilities and One Washington School District Fined for PCB Violationsá

The Seattle office of the EPA announced the settlement of three enforcement cases related to the improper storage and disposal of polychlorinated bi-phenyls. The violations were discovered by EPA after the routine review of shipping and disposal records that are required for regulated amounts of PCBs under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).

According to Daniel Duncan, EPA's Region 10 PCB Program Coordinator, "Facilities that store PCBs need to be aware of their notification and storage obligations under TSCA. We'll continue to review the reports filed under the PCB regulations to determine proper compliance with the storage and disposal rules."

After negotiated settlements, the total of the EPA penalties paid in the three cases was $6,080, as follows:
1) Golden Valley Electric Association, Fairbanks, Alaska, was fined $880 for storing PCB waste for more than two years prior to disposal.

2) Analytica Group, Anchorage, Alaska, was fined $2,763 for storing PCB waste for more than one year prior to disposal and for failing to notify the EPA and failing to obtain a PCB activity identification number.

3) Kent School District, Kent, Washington, was fined $2,437 under a December 13, 2005, agreement for storing PCB waste for more than two years prior to disposal and for failing to notify EPA and failing to obtain a PCB activity identification number. It is unlikely that school children were exposed to PCBs during this two year period.

"School districts need to "go the extra mile' to insure that PCB waste is properly stored and disposed of. We can't gamble with kid's health," said Scott Downey, EPA's Pesticide and Toxics Manager in Seattle.

Concern over the toxicity and persistence in the environment of PCBs led Congress in 1976 to enact prohibitions on the manufacture, processing, and distribution in commerce of PCBs, including "cradle to grave" (i.e., from manufacture to disposal) management of PCBs in the United States.

$243,000 Penalty for California Oil Spill

IMTT-Richmond-CA has agreed to pay $157,500 to the EPA and $85,507 to the California Department of Fish and Game Office of Spill Prevention and Response (OSPR) related to oil spills into the Santa Fe Channel, which flows into San Francisco Bay.

The spills - three that released a total of approximately 8,600 gallons of oil into the environment - occurred between June 2002 and July 2004 at the company's oil storage and transfer facility, at 100 Cutting Ave. in Richmond, Calif. This facility can store more than 28 million gallons of oil in above-ground tanks.

 The EPA discovered the violations during a September 2003 inspection.

"Oil spills can cause serious environmental harm to the fragile ecosystem of the San Francisco Bay," said Keith Takata, the director of EPA's Superfund division for the Pacific Southwest region. "It's critical that facilities have adequate oil spill plans and effective spill containment in place to prevent accidents, and to lessen environmental impacts caused when accidents occur."

 Both State and federal laws also require such facilities to develop oil spill contingency plans that specify, in detail, the actions to be taken in response to any oil spill."

When oil is repeatedly spilled in a waterway, there are cumulative effects which can hinder the recovery of the ecosystem," OSPR's Acting Administrator Lisa Curtis said. "Improvements have been made on-site in an effort to minimize any future incidents at this facility."

Metal Coating Facility to Pay $45,000 for Hazardous Waste Violations

The EPA recently settled with a Rancho Cucamonga, CA metal decorating firm requiring the company to pay an $11,000 fine, and spend $34,000 to establish an environmental management system for violations of federal hazardous waste regulations.The environmental management system will help identify pollution prevention opportunities and potentially result in improvements beyond federal requirements at Western Metal Decorating, located at 8875 Industrial Lane in Rancho Cucamonga. "Hazardous waste regulations protect human health and the environment," said Jeffrey Scott, director of the EPA's Waste Management Division for the Pacific Southwest region. "We are pleased that Western Metal Decorating is taking advantage of our supplemental environmental project program and implementing an environmental management system that will help prevent further violations in the future."In October 2004, the EPA inspected Western Metal Decorating; finding the following alleged hazardous waste violations:

  • Not closing and labeling hazardous waste containers
  • Storing waste longer than allowed
  • Not conducting weekly inspections of hazardous waste storage areas
  • Not providing annual waste refresher training

Western Metal Decorating specializes in coating large rolls of metal with polyester-based coatings, prior to the metal being made into a product.The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act oversees how to safely manage and dispose of huge amounts of waste generated nationwide.

Arkansas Waste Exchange Online

Businesses and other organizations around the state will have easy access to the exchange of unused and unwanted materials through the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ)'s Arkansas Material Exchange Directory (ARMAX).á
ARMAX is a data base that connects businesses, non-profit groups and governmental entities that have materials which may be in storage or are being sent to a landfill with others who can utilize such materials.á Examples might be used or unused products from a manufacturing process, by-products, and/or used or excess inventory.
Benefits of ARMAX include:

  • Participants profiting from reduced waste disposal costs and from the sale of items which would have been considered "waste."
  • Participants may locate valuable material locally, within the state, or in the United States.
  • The service is free.
  • Less material going into landfills; therefore more material being reused, reduced or recycled.
  • ARMAX participation conserves resources.
  • Participants become more environmentally responsible.

This icon will be prominently located on the ADEQ website for a limited time; afterwards, you can find the ARMAX information on the Solid Waste Division webpage under the Market Development Branch.á
Should you have additional questions regarding ARMAX, please contact Kevin Harris in Market Development at 501-682-0609 or Kelly Robinson, Media and Public Affairs Officer, at 501-682-0916 

ADEQ Unveils GIS Web Page for Environmental Information in Communities

Arizona Department of Environmental Quality Director Steve Owens announced that ADEQ has created a Geographic Information System (GIS) Web page providing environmental data and information on facilities and sites throughout Arizona.
The system allows users to have access to information about facilities and cleanup sites in Arizona within ADEQ's jurisdiction. The page features information from ADEQ's program divisions - Air Quality, Tank Programs, Waste Programs and Water Quality.
"Our goal is to provide access to a large amount of important environmental information," said Director Owens. "Arizonans now have an easy way to learn more about the environmental sites and facilities in their communities."
GIS is computer software that links geographic information with descriptive information, allowing the user to see not only where things are, but precisely what they are as well. Unlike a flat paper map, a GIS can present many layers of different information. For example, parents could easily determine which ADEQ-permitted facilities are located near their children's schools, find recycling centers nearby and learn about cleanup sites in their area, all from their desktop computer.á

Oregon DEQ Proposes Fee Changes for Water Quality Permits

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is proposing to revise fees for its major water quality permits that control the discharge of pollutants into state waters. The proposed revisions increase overall fee revenues that DEQ receives for its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) and Water Pollution Control Facilities (WPCF) permits and include provisions to streamline the invoicing process. DEQ is accepting public comments on the proposed fee changes through Friday, April 14.
The fee changes are based on recommendations made in 2004 by the Blue Ribbon Committee on Water Quality Permitting. The committee, comprised of representatives of business and industry, governments, the legal community and environmental advocacy groups, recommended that wastewater permitting fee revenue be increased 11% in order to maintain existing DEQ water quality staffing levels needed to process the permits. The increased revenue from the fees will also allow DEQ to phase in 2.5 new positions in 2006 and 2007, allowing the agency to process and renew water quality permits more efficiently.
This proposed rulemaking will:

  • Increase permitting fee revenue by 11%
  • Streamline the existing fee table
  • Consolidate three existing permitting program fees (filing, permit renewal and annual compliance determination) into one new annual fee
  • Streamline invoicing procedures


 As part of this proposed rulemaking change, DEQ is accepting written comments on the proposed fee changes through Friday, April 14. Interested persons may submit comments via mail, e-mail or fax. Comments may be mailed to Sonja Bjorn-Hansen, DEQ Water Quality Division, 811 SW Sixth Ave., Portland, OR 97204. 
DEQ is holding public hearings throughout the state to explain the permit fee proposal and to obtain oral and written comments on the proposal. Hearings are scheduled for early April. Each hearing begins at 3 p.m.

  • Pendleton: Tuesday, April 4, 3 p.m., City Hall Community Room, 501 SW Emigrant Ave.
  • Eugene: Wednesday, April 5, 3 p.m., City Council Chambers, 777 Pearl St.
  • Salem: Thursday, April 6, 3 p.m., Salem Public Library, Anderson Room A/B, 585 Liberty St. SE

DEQ will respond to all comments received and may modify the proposed rules. DEQ plans to recommend that the Oregon Environmental Quality Commission adopt the rules at the commission's Aug. 11, 2006 meeting. DEQ will notify anyone who submits comments about the time and place for final commission action on the proposed fee changes.
Permitting fees will change for facilities and operations that require a NPDES or WPCF permit. This rulemaking does not propose to increase fees for suction dredge permits or for DEQ's septic (on-site) permitting program. Although the overall fee revenue for DEQ's entire wastewater permitting program will not exceed 11%, the fee increase for most sources will be 11.8%. Because DEQ also evaluated the existing fee categories to determine if similar operations were paying similar fees, some sources will see an increase greater than 11.8% and a small number of sources will see a decrease in fees. Fees for activities not included in the simplified new annualized fee (new permit applications, permit modifications, technical activities and population-based fees for municipal discharges) will also increase by 11.8%.á

Annual State Toxics Report Compiled by Delaware Shows Mixed Resultsá

Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) data for 2004 from Delaware facilities compiled by the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control reveals mixed results: TRI on-site releases reported for 2004 were higher by eight% when compared to 2003, due largely to coal-fired power plant emissions, reflecting higher electric power production. When compared with 1998 data, however, on-site releases were lower by 13%. In addition, analysis of 2004 toxic waste data indicates that reported overall toxic waste decreased 3.5% compared to the previous year. The TRI reports and data for calendar year 2004 are now available through DNREC.

Federal and state laws require certain facilities in Delaware and throughout the United States to submit information annually for a wide range of toxic chemicals manufactured, processed, or otherwise used above threshold amounts. Covered facilities include primarily manufacturing facilities, oil- and coal-fired electric utilities and bulk petroleum terminals. Facilities submit information on the amount of each toxic chemical released to the environment and/or managed as waste. Data from Delaware facilities is compiled in a database by DNREC, and reports summarizing the data are prepared and published annually by DNREC and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The total TRI-reported waste generated in 2004, including on-site releases, transfers off-site, and waste managed on-site, was approximately 92.5 million pounds, a 3.5% decline from 95.8 million pounds reported in 2003 and a 39.3% decline or 60 million pounds down from the 152.4 million pounds reported in 1998. The 1998 year is typically used as a baseline because the TRI reporting requirements were expanded that year, requiring more facilities to report.

Several factors impacted the increase in reported amounts of on-site releases in 2004: One is the higher demand for electricity reflected in Indian River Power Plant's reported 25% increase in TRI chemical releases, which is in line with its electricity production. Another is the change to more accurate methods of estimating values utilized by some facilities in their reports, which in some instances caused an increase in the reported amount. These changes, combined with normal facility variations in production, resulted in the increase in the reported amount of on-site releases.

"Overall, reporting accuracy is up, and long-term on-site releases and total waste are down," said DNREC Secretary John A. Hughes. "We're very pleased with the continued decline in total TRI waste and the move by facilities toward more accurate reporting methods. At the same time, it's important to acknowledge the effects of energy demand on certain facilities and the environment when we look at these numbers in the TRI reports. We must consider the increase in on-site releases in the context of population growth and energy demand while we continue to work with industry, government and the public to re-establish a decline in these releases as we pursue our mission to protect the state's natural environment and the health and safety of people in Delaware."

In line with that mission, the Department is developing, with the aid of a review committee, a new multi-pollutant regulation to reduce nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulfur oxides (SOx) and mercury (Hg) emissions from Delaware's coal and residual oil fired electric generating power plants. The reduction in emissions will improve ambient air quality in Delaware and in downwind states, and help the state demonstrate progress toward attaining air quality standards for ground level ozone and other clean air federal obligations.

For the 2004 calendar year, 72 facilities reported releases of 102 different TRI chemicals in Delaware. Reported on-site releases to the environment were approximately 10.3 million pounds. Of this amount, approximately 7.9 million pounds were reported as released to the air, while 1.1 million pounds were released to land and 1.3 million pounds were released to water.

The TRI reporting requirements were also expanded in 2000 to provide focus on specific chemicals identified as persistent, bioaccumulative, toxic (PBT) substances, such as dioxins. Several new substances identified as PBTs were added to the list of reportable substances. In addition, threshold amounts that trigger reporting were substantially lowered for PBT's. Lead and lead compounds were added to the PBT list in 2001. Of the 72 reporting facilities for 2004, 25 reported on PBT substances. Reported on-site releases to the environment of PBT substances totaled 32,118 pounds, up from 27,365 pounds in 2003.

The EPA, as of this date, has not released the national 2004 TRI report. However, placing the 2004 Delaware reports alongside the 2003 EPA reports yields some rankings that provide a perspective for Delaware in the national TRI picture. This data shows that Delaware ranks 42 in the nation in total on-site releases for all TRI chemicals. For on-site releases, 47 facilities in the nation each released more individually than all the facilities in Delaware combined. Changes in the 2004 national values may change these rankings.

Copies of submittals from individual facilities are available upon request. Because the program reporting requirements change each year, comparison with prior years may not be valid without proper adjustments.

DNREC has published both technical and non-technical reports summarizing the 2004 TRI data. 


Georgia EPD Prepares to Reissue General Storm Water Permit for Industries

The Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD) has announced the resolution of the legal challenges blocking a general storm water permit for thousands of industries statewide and it has begun the public comment process to issue the negotiated version of the permit.
"This is a fine example of environmental organizations and regulated industries working together to find a sensible solution for protecting Georgia's water quality," said EPD Director Dr. Carol A. Couch.
The revised permit will contain new sampling requirements for industries discharging pollutants of concern to impaired stream segments. The permit also contains new clarifications on public access to Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plans (SWP3s), new requirements for industries claiming the Industrial No Exposure Exclusion and a number of additional revisions.
Georgia's National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) General Permit No. GAR000000 for Storm Water Discharges Associated with Industrial Activity is required under federal law. EPD is responsible for issuing the Industrial Activity General Permit, which regulates storm water discharges associated with industrial activity in ten categories and is good for five years. The permit was issued first in 1993 and was reissued in 1998. However, due to concerns expressed in public comments on a proposed 20032008 permit, EPD administratively extended the 19982003 permit until the issues could be addressed.
Representatives of environmental organizations, the EPA, regulated industries and other concerned parties met with EPD a number of times during 2004 and 2005 to discuss proposed language for the permit. A revised version of the permit was reissued in March 2005, but environmental organizations, including the Upper Chattahoochee Riverkeeper (UCR), the Altamaha Riverkeeper (AR) and the Coosa River Basin Initiative (CRBI), appealed the permit before it became effective. A second appeal was filed on behalf of Alcoa, Inc. The Georgia Industry Environmental Coalition (GIEC) and the Georgia Poultry Federation (GPF) filed motions to intervene in support of the permit.
EPD, GIEC, GPF and Alcoa, Inc. conducted negotiations with UCR, AR and CRBI between August 2005 and February 2006. The negotiations resulted in a settlement agreement earlier this month, which sets the requirements of the next version of the storm water general permit. EPD has published a public notice of the proposed permit. A draft of the proposed permit and a fact sheet summarizing the permit is available on EPD's website  along with the public notice. The Notice Of Intent - Version 2006 form also will be available on the EPD Web site upon issuance of the permit and can be submitted to the EPD Nonpoint Source Program within 30 days after the effective date of the permit.ááá

Ohio Toxic Releases Decreaseáá

Toxic releases to Ohio's environment have decreased for the seventh consecutive year, according to the 18th annual Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) report from Ohio EPA. Overall, releases decreased by 7.2 million pounds in 2004.
The most significant decreases were reported for releases to air, which dropped by 4.4 million pounds. Deepwell injection releases were down by 6.7 million pounds and releases to land on-site decreased by 7.9 million pounds.á An increase was reported for releases to water, up by 0.5%. Discharges by wastewater treatment plants were up by 7.2%, and off-site disposal and treatment increased by 16.4%.
Each year manufacturing and other facilities must report to Ohio EPA and U.S. EPA the amount of toxic substances they release to the environment, treat, or otherwise manage on site or transfer off-site for treatment and disposal.
For 2004, Ohio EPA received approximately 6,100 reports from 1,600 facilities, or 50 fewer facilities than the previous year.
Changes in toxic releases are attributable to many factors including changes in production, accuracy and types of measurement used, and pollution prevention efforts.
The TRI is a compilation of raw data. The report does not indicate the degree to which people may be exposed to these substances, nor is it a health study or risk assessment. Not all material that is released to the environment results in exposure to people and some forms of treatment and disposal render toxic substances less hazardous or contain them to prevent exposure.
 The material also is available at Ohio EPA's central office by calling (614) 644-4830 or writing to: Ohio EPA, DAPC/TRI, P.O. Box 1049, Columbus, Ohio 43216-1049.ááá

New Hampshire DES working with Business Leaders on Innovative Government Policyáá

The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services and U.S. EPA Region I recently hosted a forum with business leaders from around the state to begin a dialogue about areas for action that would encourage growth of environmentally-responsible companies and environmental products and services. The purpose of the dialogue was to explore how government can work with businesses to encourage them to go beyond regulatory compliance by linking sustainable business practices with environmental performance. The forum was held in cooperation with EPA Region 1, the NH Charitable Foundation, and Sustainable Step New England. Participating businesses included BAE Systems, NH Ball Bearings, National Grid, Osram Sylvania, Millipore, LDI Corporation, Northland Forest Products, Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center, Pinetree Power, Grubb & Ellis, and Monadnock Paper Company, as well as representatives from the Governor's Office, the Department of Resources and Economic Development, the Office of Energy and Planning, the Small Business Development Center, and the Business and Industry Association.
The meeting helped set the stage for a new initiative that DES will be launching this year to encourage environmental leadership and innovation in the business community. This EPA-funded initiative will include a set of projects to begin later this spring to improve environmental performance across the state, including a proposal to recognize, and possibly reward, organizations that perform above and beyond regulatory requirements.
DES anticipates many similar meetings to occur in the future, with broadened participation among other New Hampshire businesses and organizations. Michael Nolin, DES Commissioner noted, "As our state and region faces more complex, pressing challenges such as climate change, energy issues, and growth pressures, the need is greater than ever for government and business to work in partnership to identify the creative solutions that will ensure a healthy environment and a strong economy."á
New Hampshire is home to many businesses that are innovating to take advantage of how proactive environmental and energy practices can be good for business. This meeting was designed to bring those businesses and government leaders together to share their experiences and to see explore ways to move ahead. For more information, please contact Bob Minicucci, DES Special Projects Manager, Office of the Commissioner at (603) 271-2941

Virginia Issues 2004 Report on Chemical Releasesá


Chemical releases to the environment reported by Virginia industries decreased by about 3.2% in 2004, according to the latest Toxics Release Inventory produced by the Department of Environmental Quality. The amount of chemicals that facilities transferred off-site or managed on-site for safe treatment or disposal decreased by about 1.4% and 0.6%, respectively, from 2003.
"I am encouraged that fewer chemicals are entering Virginia's environment," DEQ Director David K. Paylor said. "We still have work to do, and DEQ remains committed to working with businesses and industry to reduce chemical releases."
The report also includes releases of a group of chemicals known as "persistent bioaccumulative toxics." These chemicals remain in the environment for long periods of time and can build up in living tissue. Releases of these persistent chemicals in 2004 totaled about 307,734 pounds, a 20.6% decrease from 2003.
The 2004 report, which contains the most recent data available, includes this information:

  • The amount of chemicals transferred off-site (to wastewater treatment facilities, or for recycling, energy recovery or disposal) - 64 million pounds, down 1.4% from 2003.
  • The amount of chemicals managed on-site (through treatment, recycling or energy recovery) - 247.4 million pounds, down 0.6%.
  • Total on-site releases - 63 million pounds, down 3.2%.
  • On-site releases to the air - 48 million pounds, down 5.9%.
  • On-site releases to water - 1 million pounds, up 11.6%
  • On-site releases to land - 5.6 million pounds, down 0.7%.
  • The report also contains rankings by facility, type of industry and locality on the release, transfer and management of chemicals.

DEQ uses the TRI data to target facilities for projects to reduce pollution at the source. DEQ's Environmental Excellence Program uses incentives and assistance efforts to promote environmental stewardship beyond regulatory compliance. The goal of this initiative is to help develop more efficient technologies and business operations by reducing the amount of chemicals released to the environment and improving how the chemicals are managed.
Information on releases from 2005 is due to DEQ for analysis this summer and will be available to the public in early 2007.ááá

CNMP Watch Website Launched

Comprehensive Nutrient Management Plans  Watch is a web source for manure and nutrient management planning information.á It is designed to assist the agriculture livestock industry and others with information and guidance related to nutrient management plans and CNMPs.á The site is made possible by the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture Research Foundation through funding from EPA's Office of Wastewater Management.á The site also provides state-by-state information on specific requirements.á The site is intended for the agricultural livestock industry, federal and state government agencies, and agricultural service providers, but can be a valuable for agriculture as a whole, the environmental community as well as the general public.áá

New EPA Publication on Direct-push Well Technology

This Interstate Technology and Regulatory Council(ITRC) technical/regulatory guidance document presents detailed information related to Direct Push well technology, including the following: a description of Direct Push well technology; equipment and installation requirements; known regulatory barriers and concerns; technology advantages and limitations; health and safety issues; stakeholder involvement; and comparative data between
Direct Push and conventionally drilled wells in the form of multiple case studies as they relate to contaminant detection and water level measurements.á This document is intended to provide the information required to make an informed decision regarding the use of Direct Push wells for long term groundwater chemistry monitoring and for static ground water levels.á

Missouri Interpretations of Hazardous Waste Regulationsá

Renee Bungart recently circulated the following frequently asked questions at the Missouri DNR.á Other states may have requirements and interpretations that differ from those in Missouri.
Q.á Do satellite accumulation area requirements apply to Conditionally Exempt Small Quantity Generators?
A.á No, Conditionally Exempt Small Quantity Generators do not need to follow satellite accumulation area requirements.
Q.á Is there a maximum time a container can be in a satellite accumulation area?
A.á In Missouri, each container of hazardous waste has a one-year time limit in satellite accumulation areas.á When you start a container you must identify the contents and the beginning date of accumulation.
Q.á Can a business have 55 gallons of multiple non-acute hazardous waste streams in a single satellite accumulation area or is 55 gallons the maximum total volume for all containers in a designated satellite accumulation area?
A.á You may have 55 gallons for each waste stream generated, but you must have only one container per waste stream.á Once filled you have three days to remove the waste from the satellite accumulation area.áá For those three days after filling the container it is possible that you could have two containers from one waste stream in a single satellite accumulation
Q.á Do I have three working days or just three days (72 hours) to remove hazardous waste from a satellite accumulation area once a container is full?
A.á You only have three days (72 hours).á It is important to plan ahead, especially over holidays and before shut down periods.
Q.á Are businesses required to have a secondary containment for satellite accumulation areas?
A.á No, businesses are not required to have a secondary containment for satellite accumulation areas.
Q.á Do you require any signage that an area is being managed as a satellite accumulation area?
A.á No, but it is good idea to clearly indicate the area as a satellite accumulation area.
Q.á Are there a maximum number of satellite accumulation areas that a generator is allowed to have?
A.á No, you may have as many satellite accumulation areas as you have hazardous waste generation points.
Q.á How do you define 'near the point of generation'?á Can you offer any guidelines that businesses should follow?
A.á Hazardous waste in a satellite accumulation area must be under the control of the operator of the process that generated the waste.á Usually that means in the line of sight of the operator and in the same building. This last statement may be modified on a case by case basis.á Exceptions can be made if the waste is dangerous and must be placed in a separate locked building.
Q.á Are threaded funnels with latching lids acceptable for meeting the 'closed' requirements for containers in satellite accumulation areas?
A.á The funnels must be capable of keeping vapors and liquid waste from escaping, even if the drum is knocked over.á 
Q.á Can I move waste from one satellite accumulation area to another satellite accumulation area?
A.á No, movement of waste from one satellite accumulation area to another is not allowed.
Q.á Can a one cubic-yard bag be a satellite storage container?
A.á You may use a one cubic-yard bag as a satellite storage container as long as it fulfills the basic container requirements.á The container must be in good condition, be compatible with the waste, and remain closed unless adding waste or removing waste.á It is important to remember that you are limited to 55 gallons of non-acute hazardous waste or one kilogram of acute hazardous waste.á The cubic-yard bag would need to be removed from the satellite storage area when it reaches the volume limit (i.e. you can not fill up the cubic-yard bag because it would be over the 55 gallon limit).

Trivia Question of the Week

What is the name of the Department of Transportation's division that issues regulations for the transportation of hazardous materials by highway?
a.áDivision of Hazardous Materials Safetyb.á
b. Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administrationc.á
c. Research and Special Programs Administrationd.á
d. Hazardous Material Transportation Administrationá