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Two Connecticut Companies Fined for Hazardous Waste Violations

Release Date: 02/26/2008
Contact Information: Paula Ballentine, (617) 918-1027

(Boston, Mass. – Feb. 26, 2008) - Two closely-related Connecticut companies will pay a combined penalty of over $325,000 for alleged violations of federal hazardous waste laws, according to a settlement filed by the U.S. Dept. of Justice and U.S. EPA.

The companies, Bridgeport United Recycling, Inc. and United Oil Recovery, Inc. reached the settlement regarding their alleged violations of the “hazardous waste generator, treatment, storage and disposal,” and “organic air emissions” requirements of the federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). EPA initiated a single enforcement action against the sister organizations.

Bridgeport United Recycling, of Bridgeport, and United Oil Recovery, of Meriden, are closely-related facilities that are permitted for hazardous waste treatment, storage and disposal. In addition to accepting used fuels and other hazardous wastes for treatment and disposal, the facilities generate large quantities of hazardous waste and market hazardous waste fuel and “off-spec” used oil fuel. United Oil Recovery is also a transporter of hazardous and non-hazardous waste.

Under the settlement, Bridgeport United Recycling will pay a civil penalty of $205,798, and United Oil Recovery will pay a civil penalty of $119,392 to the United States. Bridgeport United Recycling will also be required to automate and upgrade the device that controls organic air emissions at their facility, including installation of high-level alarms, automatic switching of the carbon beds, and increasing the operational rate of the blower. The facility improvements and other requirements of the settlement will ensure that hazardous wastes from both companies’ facilities are property treated and disposed, and that operations are conducted without harming the health and safety of neighbors and workers.

“It’s important that any facility storing or handling hazardous wastes follow established procedures to protect public health and our environment,” said Robert Varney, regional administrator of EPA’s New England office.

EPA’s action is based on an inspection of the Bridgeport facility conducted jointly by EPA and the Conn. Dept. of Environmental Protection (CT DEP) in Sept. 2003, and inspections of the Meriden facility conducted by CT DEP in June, July and September 2003. The purpose of the inspections was to ensure compliance with federal and state requirements of RCRA, which governs the management and disposal of hazardous waste.

EPA’s joint inspections with CT DEP revealed that both facilities failed to operate in compliance with applicable hazardous waste management standards, as well as regulations covering organic air emissions from tanks of hazardous waste. Violations at the Bridgeport facility related to improper design and operation of the control device that is used to reduce organic air emissions. Violations at the Meriden facility included failures in hazardous waste analysis and verification testing, acceptance of certain un-permitted wastes, and regulatory permitting and container management requirements.

More information:
Enforcing hazardous waste requirements in New England http://www.epa.gov/region1/enforcement/waste

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