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EPA 2006 enforcement highlights for Wisconsin

Release Date: 11/16/2006
Contact Information: Phillippa Cannon, (312) 353-6218, cannon.phillippa@epa.gov

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. 06-OPA215

CHICAGO (Nov. 16, 2006) - U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 today announced that its enforcement actions in Wisconsin in 2006 have caused regulated entities to pay more than $6 million to correct past environmental violations and help prevent future ones.

In the past fiscal year, EPA resolved 21 actions against regulated entities in Wisconsin; assessed a total of $353,522 in civil penalties for various air, water, hazardous waste, community right-to-know and pesticide violations; and initiated 24 more cases. As part of settlement agreements, Wisconsin companies and cities agreed to do supplemental environmental projects worth about $194,360.

"Complying with the law is key to ensuring that public health and the environment are protected," said Regional Administrator Mary A. Gade. "We and our partners at the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources are committed to ensuring cleaner air, water and land for the people of Wisconsin."

Among the most notable settlements in Wisconsin were with Wisconsin Public Service and MetalTek International Inc.:

  • Wisconsin Public Service Corporation (WPSC), Green Bay, Wis., entered into an agreement with EPA to address remaining soil, ground water and sediment contamination at six of its former gas manufacturing plants in Wisconsin. Previously, the sites were part of a state voluntary cleanup program and some cleanup has occurred at four sites. WPSC is expected to spend around $6 million to investigate contamination, develop cleanup plans and reimburse EPA's costs.
  • MetalTek International Inc. paid a $99,000 penalty for allegedly storing hazardous waste without a permit at its plant in Waukesha.

Region 5 coordinates with state environmental agencies in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin to enforce environmental laws. State agencies also have authority to pursue their own enforcement actions. Region-wide, federal enforcement actions this year alone resulted in:
  • 145,358,476 pounds of pollutants reduced
  • 535,385 cubic yards of contaminated soil cleaned up
  • 23 million cubic yards of water and 5,740 linear feet of streams restored
  • 2,368 acres of wetlands protected

For more information about the Region's enforcement program go to http://www.epa.gov/region5/enforcement/fy06eoy.htm
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