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Environmental Policing Nets Gains for Virginia Worth $1.9 Billion

Release Date: 12/04/2008
Contact Information: Bonnie Smith, 215-814-5543, smith.bonnie@epa.gov

PHILADELPHIA -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency concluded enforcement cases in fiscal year 2008 that will produce more than $1.9 billion in pollution controls and environmental cleanup protecting Virginia’s air, water, and land. The cases include $24 million in penalties that polluters will have to pay for violating federal environmental laws. The majority of these outcomes result from EPA's multi-state settlement with Massey Energy Company which includes both Virginia and West Virginia.

"Virginia residents will benefit from cuts in pollution and from improvements in the way pollution is managed by these companies and industrial facilities that are now complying with the law," said Donald S. Welsh, EPA's mid-Atlantic regional administrator. "The millions of dollars these companies will have to spend in Virginia as a result of our environmental policing will also produce health benefits for the public."

The agency also negotiated agreements with specific violators to spend $157,582 on local environmental projects helping communities.

EPA's mid-Atlantic enforcement program inspected and took action for violations associated with eight different environmental statutes in Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Delaware and the District of Columbia. The regional cases ranged from wetlands violations to mismanagement of hazardous waste to illegal discharges of pollutants. Several cases were significant because of their trailblazing efforts including: an agreement to spend
$1 million on a wind-powered energy project in addition to a penalty payment, Maryland's decision to step forward and voluntarily sign a self-policing agreement with EPA; and major sewage system upgrades in Pittsburgh and 82 surrounding municipalities to protect local waterways.

To read more about enforcement results in EPA's mid-Atlantic region see our website at http://www.epa.gov/region03/enforcement/accomplishments08.html.

The report, U.S. EPA OECA Fiscal Year 2008 Accomplishments Report: Protecting Public Health and the Environment, is available on-line at: http://www.epa.gov/compliance/resources/reports/accomplishments/oeca/fy08accomplishment.pdf

More information on EPA fiscal year 2008 enforcement and compliance results:
http://www.epa.gov/compliance/resources/reports/endofyear/eoy2008/fy2008.html

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