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Yuengling Settles Clean Water Act Case

Release Date: 9/23/2003
Contact Information: Roy Seneca 215-814-5567

Contact: Roy Seneca (215) 814-5567
PHILADELPHIA – D.G. Yuengling & Son Inc. has settled a Clean Water Act case regarding violations at its Pottsville, Pa. brewery, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today.

In a consent agreement with EPA, Yuengling has agreed to pay a $110,000 penalty to settle a December 2002 EPA complaint over violations of limits on pH and metal discharges to the local wastewater treatment facility.

Under the Clean Water Act, significant industrial users of publicly owned treatment facilities must obtain “pretreatment” permits limiting pollution discharges to these facilities. These permit limits are designed to protect the plants’ wastewater treatment capacity. The Yuengling brewery discharges more than 150,000 gallons of industrial processed water daily to the City of Pottsville's municipal wastewater treatment plant, which in turn discharges to the West Branch of the Schuylkill River.

The pretreatment permit issued by Pottsville imposes limits on Yuengling's discharges of copper, lead, nickel and zinc, and also limits the pH level of Yuengling’s discharge. In April 2000, Pottsville cited Yuengling for 20 violations of its pretreatment permit, and ordered the company to install pollution control equipment. Yuengling failed to install this equipment, and continued to violate its pretreatment permit.

In its December 2002 complaint, which was amended in May 2003, EPA cited Yuengling for 64 permit violations, predominantly violations of pretreatment permit limits on pH and average monthly discharges of copper and zinc.

EPA has issued an order requiring the plant to comply with its pretreatment permit.