(The following press release from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
was received by e-mail and was reformatted. The sender verified the statement.)
*U.S. and W.Va. Settle Case Against DuPont over Clean Air Act Violations
at Washington Works Facility*
*"Company Agrees to Pay $800,000 Penalty, Improve Hazardous Air Pollution
*PHILADELPHIA (October 28, 2013)* -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
(EPA) today announced that E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Company* *(DuPont) has
agreed to settle alleged Clean Air Act violations at DuPont’s Washington Works
Facility, located in Washington, Wood County, West Virginia.
A proposed settlement, involving DuPont, the United States, and the State of
West Virginia, was filed today in federal district court in Charleston, West
Virginia by the U.S. Department of Justice. Under the terms of the proposed
consent decree, DuPont has agreed to pay a $800,000 civil penalty, and
implement several safeguards to limit emissions of hazardous air pollutants
(HAPs), including volatile organic compounds (VOCs) such as formaldehyde,
methanol and acetal. VOCs contribute to the formation of ground-level ozone,
which is a major component of smog and can cause or aggravate respiratory
disease. Ozone also causes damage to forests and crops, fabric and exterior
coatings such as oil and acrylic latex, oil coatings and automotive finishes.
Some known or suspected effects of exposure to HAPs include cancer,
reproductive health problems, and birth defects.
This enforcement action is part of EPA’s national initiative to reduce
emissions of HAPs by enforcing compliance with the Clean Air Act’s “leak
detection and repair” (LDAR) regulations. EPA has determined that leaking
equipment such as valves, pumps and connectors are the largest source of
emissions of hazardous air emissions from chemical manufacturers and petroleum
refineries. A facility that is subject to LDAR requirements must monitor
equipment containing HAPs at regular intervals to identify leaks, and leaking
components must then be promptly repaired or replaced.
In a civil complaint, filed with the proposed settlement, the United States, on
behalf of EPA, and West Virginia alleged several violations of LDAR safeguards
at DuPont’s Washington Works facility. The violations, which are alleged to
have begun in 2007 included failure to monitor pumps, valves, and connectors;
failure to calibrate monitoring equipment; fairlure to identify and report
equipment containing HAPs; failure to close open-ended lines containing HAPs;
and, failure to conduct required pressure tests.
In addition to the $800,000 penalty, to be divided equally between the United
States* *and West Virginia, the consent decree includes injunctive relief
requiring DuPont to implement several measures to improve Clean Air Act
compliance and reduce emissions of HAPs at the Washington Works plant. Among
other measures, DuPont will commission an independent third-party LDAR
applicability audit of the facility; prepare a detailed LDAR manual covering
all regulated process units at the facility; implement a LDAR training program;
institute a two-year enhanced LDAR program; and conduct quarterly quality
assurance and quality control reviews and annual audits of the enhanced LDAR
program to review compliance with the consent decree.
The proposed consent decree, which has been filed in the Southern District of
West Virginia, is subject to a 30-day public comment period and final court
*Contact:* Bonnie Smith, 215-814-5543; firstname.lastname@example.org
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