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EPA orders Pepsi to comply with Clean Water Act requirements

Release Date: 8/12/2004
Contact Information: Wendy L. Chavez, 415-947-4248, chavez.wendy@epa.gov

SAN FRANCISCO -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ordered Pepsi Bottling Co. of Tucson to comply with the federal Clean Water Act.

The EPA order requires Pepsi to immediately obtain an industrial storm water discharge permit; submit a storm water pollution prevention plan and a storm water monitoring plan; and clean up the facility to minimize pollutants in storm water runoff.

"We are concerned that the facility has allowed polluted runoff to enter the Rodeo Wash," said Alexis Strauss, the EPA's Water Division director for the Pacific Southwest region. "To protect Tucson's waterways, Pepsi will need to promptly comply with the Clean Water Act and correct the problems at the plant."

The company's facility lacked effective management practices or an adequate containment system, which allowed storm water to come into direct contact with industrial pollutants -- such as oil and grease -- from its truck fleet before entering municipal storm drains and the Rodeo Wash. The Rodeo Wash flows to the Santa Cruz River, a tributary of the Gila River and the Colorado River.

An EPA contractor discovered the violations during a routine inspection in June 2004.

The storm water pollution prevention plan, required by the discharge permit, sets guidelines and best management practices to prevent storm water runoff from being contaminated by pollutants generated by a company's industrial activities.

A storm water monitoring program is used to assess the types of pollutants getting into storm water from a facility and ensures the effectiveness of a pollution control program.

Failure to comply with the Clean Water Act or the EPA order could make Pepsi liable for civil penalties of up to $32,500 per day.

For more information about Clean Water Act requirements, visit: www.epa.gov/ebtpages/watewaterpollutionlegalaspects.html

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