All News Releases By Date
EPA Inspections Find 11 Clean Water Act Violations at Alaska Construction Sites
Release Date: 7/20/2004
Contact Information: Kim Ogle
July 20, 2004
Proposed Penalties Range from $1,000 to $8,900
During a recent round of inspections of nine Anchorage and Wasilla-area construction sites, inspectors from the Region 10 office of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency discovered that 11 construction site operators (both owners and contractors) violated federal Clean Water Act rules meant to protect lakes and streams from construction site run-off.
The EPA inspected industrial, commercial, and residential sites, some of which failed to obtain a required storm-water construction permit. All sites required permits and all had violations, such as failure to adequately plan for and implement erosion and sediment controls, failure to inspect and maintain such controls, and failure to prevent construction site materials from polluting nearby waters.
The agency has the authority to settle the violations quickly because agency policy allows expedited settlements for construction sites less than 50 acres and for which operators are first-time violators. The inspections resulted in 11 Expedited Settlement Offers (ESOs) with penalties ranging from $1,000 to $8,900.
These inspections represent the first wave of intensive enforcement following three years of compliance assistance for builders and the construction trade regarding the requirements of EPA's national storm-water Construction General Permit (CGP). In 2003 EPA staff gave presentations at workshops throughout the state to further educate the construction community about the stormwater rules.
Kim Ogle, EPA's water quality enforcement manager, said managing stormwater responsibly at construction sites should be a key part of every developer's site plan.
“It's no secret that stormwater runoff from construction sites can harm water quality,” Ogle said. “Nor is it a secret that the law requires regulated operators to obtain permits and implement a pollution prevention plan to prevent soil, debris, and contaminated water from polluting our streams, lakes and rivers.
“This widespread array of violations — especially after three years of education and compliance assistance – is troubling.”
- Clean Water Act (epa.gov/r5water/cwa.htm)
Subscribe to receive Region 10 News Releases via email