Environmental Protection Agency fines St. Louis scrap metal facility $68,000 for alleged Clean Water Act violations

Environmental Protection Agency or EPA website

SA Recycling LLC of St. Louis, Missouri, will pay $68,000 in civil penalties to resolve alleged violations of the federal Clean Water Act. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the company failed to adequately control stormwater runoff from its scrap metal recycling and processing facility. EPA says that these failures could result in illegal discharges of pollution into the Mississippi River.

“Uncontrolled runoff from industrial facilities not only harms streams and rivers, but it also limits the public’s use and enjoyment of those waters,” said David Cozad, director of EPA Region 7’s Enforcement and Compliance Assurance Division. “This settlement demonstrates EPA’s commitment to protecting vital watersheds, especially in areas overburdened by pollution, and creating a level playing field with businesses who are complying with the law.”

In the settlement documents, EPA alleges that SA Recycling failed to comply with certain terms of its Clean Water Act permit, including failure to update and implement practices to prevent runoff of pollution, failure to perform inspections, and failure to train employees on stormwater management practices.

In addition to paying the penalty, SA Recycling is correcting the alleged violations through the implementation of an EPA compliance order. EPA estimates it will cost the company around $44,000 to comply with the order.

EPA identified that the community surrounding SA Recycling’s facility was a potentially sensitive location for air pollution, lead-based paint, hazardous waste, and wastewater discharges. EPA is strengthening enforcement in such communities to address disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects of industrial operations on vulnerable populations.

Under the Clean Water Act, industrial facilities that propose to discharge into protected water bodies are required to obtain permits and follow the requirements outlined in those permits to reduce pollution runoff. Failure to obtain a permit or follow the requirements of a permit may violate federal law.