Company Fined for Used Oil Violations


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently reached a $20,000 settlement with Pacific Marine and Industrial Corp., for used oil and hazardous waste management violations at its power plant in Saipan, Northern Mariana Islands.

The Saipan-based company corrected the violations and also agreed to spend over $68,000 to conduct a series of environmental projects that will focus on used oil management including storage and spill prevention at commercial facilities.

Dean Higuchi, EPA Region 9 spokesman, told Lube Report the violations likely involved general industrial oils, and stemmed from initial inspections conducted by EPA and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands Division of Environmental Quality in March 2004.

Proper management of used oil is imperative on an island like Saipan, said Nancy Lindsay, acting director of Waste Programs for the EPA Pacific Southwest Region. Spilled used oil can contaminate soil and poison ocean ecosystems. I am pleased that the company will implement environmental projects that will benefit the CNMI [Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands] by training other facilities about proper used oil management, spill prevention and storage for proper disposal.

Pacific Marine will sponsor a used oil collection event for Saipan, purchase pollution prevention equipment for used oil management and spill prevention, conduct pollution prevention evaluations at four hotels in Saipan, and provide training to managers and workers on pollution prevention and used oil management.

The agency said the company had failed to notify the EPA of hazardous waste activity and properly mark or label containers of used oil. The EPA said other violations included failing to respond to a release of used oil, improper documentation, and lacking a certified spill response plan.

The EPAs used oil and used battery rules require facilities to properly store wastes, and label and manage waste containers. Rules also call for facilities to properly train employees to manage waste and to manage their used oil.

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