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Vermont Furniture Maker Agrees to Pay $73,852 to Settle Clean Air Violations

Release Date: 01/09/03
Contact Information: Andrew Spejewski, EPA Press Office, 617-918-1014

BOSTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today that Ethan Allen Inc. has agreed to a settlement for alleged clean air violations at its Orleans, Vermont facility. Ethan Allen, a wood furniture manufacturer, will pay a $73,852 penalty.

The settlement stems from emissions violations in 2001. In May 2001, in response to an EPA order, Ethan Allen conducted particulate emissions tests on its wood fired boilers at the Orleans and Beecher Falls facilities in Vermont. Two of the three boilers at the Orleans facility failed the emissions tests. One of the boilers was emitting particulate pollution at more than twice the legal limit. Particulate pollution can cause a variety of respiratory and other health effects.

Ethan Allen repaired the emissions control equipment on the boilers during the summer of 2001, and retested the two failing boilers in October 2001. Both boilers passed the retest.

"Recent research shows particulate pollution can have serious public health impact," said Robert W. Varney, regional administrator for EPA's New England Office. "I am pleased that the we were able to work closely with the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation on this issue and that Ethan Allen moved quickly to correct the problem and ensure it won't happen again."