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EPA fines Tempe company $17,500 for toxic air emissions

Release Date: 1/26/2004
Contact Information: Wendy L. Chavez, (415) 947-4248

Company required to stop using toxic pollutant and reduce emissions by 5.25 tons

SAN FRANCISCO -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently fined a Tempe company $17,500 for failing to comply with federal standards for air toxics emissions from its degreasing operations.

Triumph Corp. will pay a $17,500 penalty and, as part of an environmental project under the settlement, will stop using trichloroethylene, or TCE, in its degreasing operations and begin using n-propyl bromide, which is not classified as a hazardous air pollutant. The company will spend $65,625 on the project that will utimately reduce air toxic emissions by an average of 5.25 tons a year.

The company was allegedly violating the National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants, which governs how much halogenated solvent, such as TCE or trichloroethylene, a company can emit from machines used to degrease metal parts.

"Companies with degreasing operations must comply with air pollution laws so that their operations don't release excessive toxic emissions," said Deborah Jordan, director of the EPA's Air Division for the Pacific Southwest region. "Today's action goes beyond paying a penalty it reduces the amount of toxic pollutants being emitted into the air."

Potential health effects resulting from exposure to hazardous air pollutants include leukemia and other cancers, and reproductive and developmental effects. Halogenated solvents can emit volatile organic compounds, a key component of smog.

Triumph Corp.'s air emissions were approximately 8 tons in 2001 and 2.5 tons in 2002.

The EPA began inspecting the company in 2003. The EPA fined two other Arizona companies in October for similar violations. Follow-up inspections may be done at these companies to ensure they are complying with applicable air pollution laws.

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