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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 27, 2003

Contact: Amy Cradic
(609) 984-1795

 

DEP Reaches Settlement with Atlantic States Cast Iron Pipe for Air and
Water Pollution Violations:
Substantial Reductions of Air Emissions and Water Pollutants Achieved

(03/156) TRENTON - New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Commissioner Bradley M. Campbell today announced two settlement agreements with Atlantic States Cast Iron Pipe (Atlantic States), Warren County, for multiple violations of the New Jersey Air Pollution Control and Water Pollution Control Acts. The total penalty for both settlements is nearly $1.4 million.

"Atlantic States appears ready to reverse its past history of environmental noncompliance and has now made an enforceable commitment to reduce toxic air pollution emissions and closely adhere to water pollution control measures required to protect public health and the environment," said Commissioner Campbell. "The company has taken an important first step toward compliance by switching to a new type of paint that will prevent the emission of hundreds of tons of air pollution each year."

Under the settlement agreement, Atlantic States must reduce emissions of volatile organic compounds, which contribute to the formation of ozone, by an estimated 350 tons annually. This reduction will be achieved by substituting water-based paint for the asphalt-based paint typically used in the industry to coat cast iron pipes. In addition, Atlantic States submitted an application to modify its Air Pollution Control Operating Permit to reflect the addition of its paint spray operation. The facility also must evaluate the type of emission controls or other measures needed to meet its air pollution emission limits that will be specified in the new permit.

"This settlement demonstrates our commitment to addressing in-state sources of pollution at the same time that we are vigorously pursuing out-of state sources," said Attorney General Peter C. Harvey. "We will continue to be vigilant in our enforcement of environmental laws."

To address its stormwater violations, Atlantic States commissioned a new stormwater collection and reuse system and closed three of four outfall pipes, which discharge into the Delaware River.

Atlantic States manufactures cast iron pipes by processing recycled scrap metal through a melting furnace to produce a base molten iron. Once cast, the pipes are coated with paint. As a result of the process, the facility emits carbon monoxide, particulate matter and other air contaminants.

Between 1999 and 2002, the DEP issued 10 enforcement orders and penalty assessments to Atlantic States for exceeding air pollution limits for carbon monoxide, for illegally installing and operating a paint spray operation without proper air pollution permits, for exceeding emission standards of particulate matter and nickel compounds, and for allowing emissions to bypass air pollution controls.

Atlantic States also was fined for failure to keep proper records and submit stack emission test results. To settle the air pollution violations, Atlantic States will pay the state a $1 million penalty in three installments, which will be paid in full by March 2004.

In addition to air pollution violations, between 1997 through 2001, Atlantic States violated water pollution limits regulated by its DEP permit and failed to sample and analyze its stormwater discharge. Atlantic States discharges stormwater to the Delaware River through the Town of Phillipsburg's municipal storm sewer system. To settle its water pollution violations, Atlantic States will pay the state a $381,648 penalty plus interest to be paid in full by 2004.

In both cases, Atlantic States admits no liability.

Copies of the settlement agreements between the DEP and Atlantic States for both air and water pollution violations are available upon request.

 

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