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Two oil and gas facilities in Alaska resolve industrial stormwater violations

Release Date: 04/29/2014
Contact Information: Hanady Kader, EPA Public Affairs, 206-553-0454, kader.hanady@epa.gov

(Seattle—April 29, 2014) Two Alaska companies have agreed to resolve violations of federal stormwater rules intended to protect surface water and waterways, according to settlements with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. CPD Alaska and Wrangell Oil have agreed to settle industrial stormwater violations with EPA in two separate settlements. The companies violated National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits.

“Stormwater permits protect Alaskan waters from harmful pollutants,” said Jeff KenKnight, EPA NPDES Unit Manager. “Industrial facilities must properly manage industrial stormwater during construction projects and submit accurate records to ensure all facilities operate on a level playing field.”

CPD Alaska, LLC

CPD Alaska, LLC operates a large port facility in Anchorage that provides jet fuel to the Elmendorf Air Force Base. The facility has six fuel tanks in active operation with a total capacity of 17.4 million gallons, and a tank that can hold nearly 4 million for spill containment. On-site stormwater is treated and discharged into a stormwater sewer system that drains into Cook Inlet.

An EPA inspection confirmed that a facilities upgrade project in 2012 resulted in improper stormwater discharges to Cook Inlet. A contractor excavating in an area with known gasoline and diesel groundwater contamination collected the contaminated, untreated groundwater and discharged it into the stormwater sewer system.

The violations could have been avoided with adequate precautions before initiating construction in an area with known contamination.

Cook Inlet is habitat for many marine species, including beluga whales. The Cook Inlet beluga whales are listed as an endangered species.

The facility has resolved the violations and paid a fine of $147,000.

Wrangell Oil, Inc.

The Wrangell Oil facility in Wrangell, Alaska sells heating oil and gasoline to commercial and residential customers and provides marine fueling services from a small marina. The facility has seven aboveground storage tanks with a maximum storage capacity of 240,000 gallons. The tanks are located in a containment structure with basins to collect stormwater and spills.

An EPA inspection found violations from 2008 to 2013 including failure to sample discharges, failure to maintain monitoring records, and failure to develop a plan for best management practices.

Wrangell Oil has resolved the violations and paid a fine of $45,500. The facility was sold to a new fuel distribution operator in 2013.

EPA conducted the inspections of the two facilities while the agency had NPDES permit administration responsibilities for the Alaska oil and gas sector. The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation now administers an approved state NPDES program and as of October 2012, implements a state program for the oil and gas sector in Alaska.

For more information on NPDES permits, visit: http://yosemite.epa.gov/r10/water.nsf/NPDES+Permits/Permits+Homepage