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Berry Corporation

Letter from Virginia Wetherell to David Gardiner

January 17, 1996

Mr. David Gardiner
Assistant Administrator
Regulatory Reinvention Pilot Projects
Water Docket, Mail Code 4101
Environmental Protection Agency
401 M Street, Southwest
Washington, D.C. 20460

XL Project Proposal - Clarification

Dear Mr. Gardiner:

Thank you for your letter of November 13, 1995, requesting supplemental information concerning this proposal. We are pleased to provide the following clarifications, which we trust will enable you to make an informed judgment on its feasibility.

1) Environmental Performance - The project anticipates several areas where environmental performance should improve as a result of the new approach to permitting. They are:

Improved compliance with existing rules. The Comprehensive Operating Plan (COP) will be prepared in large part by plant operations personnel. First-level staff will be directly involved in the preparation of written operating procedures. As a result, we expect that there will be a better understanding of how their actions can negatively impact the environment, and what actions can be taken to prevent this. The involvement of plant employees in the process is expected to result in better buy-in and compliance with responsible environmental behavior.

Voluntary Higher Standards. The facility owner has committed to reinvest a part of the savings realized from reduced permitting activity into environmental upgrades. This will include the addition of pollution control and monitoring equipment and processes, testing protocols and the adoption of best management practices more stringent than the requirements of existing rules and standards.

One example of this is the voluntary adoption of international environmental and quality control standards such as ISO 4000, ISO 9000 and ISO 14000. Another example is the voluntary use of continuous emissions monitoring equipment (CEM) on discharge points such as the boiler stacks, where rules currently only require intermittent testing.

Recognition of Alternate Processes. The facility has chosen to voluntarily construct an artificial onsite wetland to manage and process treated wastewater discharges. Water from this area will be utilized to irrigate the adjacent citrus groves. As a result, there is no wastewater discharge from the facility. The facility received a permit for discharge of 400,000 gpd to surface waters. The facility nonetheless chose the more expensive, but more environmentally responsible alternative. The new approach to permitting will provide a mechanism to recognize this type of action in reviewing the overall environmental impact of the facility.

2) Permit Duration and Review - The Comprehensive Operating Plan (COP) approach to permitting recognizes that the facility is expected to change very little during its operational life. Thus, permit renewals, while expensive and time consuming, are usually routine, and repetitive in nature. The proposed process envisions a five-year permit, with a simplified automatic renewal up to a cumulative total of twenty years, subject to several conditions. These conditions would include the following:

a) Exemplary compliance history during the preceding five years.

b) Opportunity for public comment and input.

c) Upgrade of the facility to include best current operating practices and technology.

All of the agencies listed in our initial application are expected to be party to the proposed permitting process, and are expected to be signatories to a memorandum of understanding, a draft of which is attached for your information. A list of all permits currently issued to the facility, which will be supplanted by the COP is also attached, per your request.

3) Stakeholder Support - The Berry Corporation facility is located five miles from the nearest community (LaBelle, FL), and is essentially surrounded by 10,000 acres of citrus groves. Nevertheless, we recognize the importance of community input to provide increased accountability. The following are some of the steps we plan to take in order to include the community in the permitting process:

a) Selection of a Citizens Advisory Council to provide input and review of the draft
COP. This council will include responsible environmental advocates, as well as
local community activists from LaBelle.

b) Public Outreach concerning the permitting process. Publication of the draft COP
in the community prior to issuing a notice of intent to issue. We plan to hold
public meetings in the area to provide for citizen input and comment, since this
is a new approach to permitting.

c) We will also solicit the advice, coordination and input of the LaBelle Chamber
of Commerce, and the Regional Economic Development Initiative (REDI) which
encompasses Hendry and the adjacent four counties.

Thank you for your interest in our project. We apologize for leaving out some of the details, which was done in the interest of providing a more concise, and more readable application. We look forward to your early favorable decision on the project.

Sincerely yours,

Virginia B. Wetherell

cc: Bill Patton
Michael Phillips
Ernie Caldwell

Memorandum of Agreement
Industry and Government
concerning the
Comprehensive Operating Plan Concept

l Purpose

The purpose of this agreement is to establish mutual objectives and procedures to be utilized in developing a Comprehensive Operating Plan for an industrial facility. The Comprehensive Operating Plan hereinafter referred to as the COP, will replace all existing regulatory environmental permits issued by federal, state and local agencies. (See attached)

ll Background

Agricultural and industrial operations are often subject to multiple permits with varying duration, necessity continuous to prepare renewal applications. In many cases, no change to the original permit ensues.

The current approach to permitting and regulation is highly compartmentalized, within each agency, and sub-division of each agency, focused on a limited spectrum of environmental issues. As a result, opportunities for net environmental benefit are sometimes missed, and unnecessary costs are sometimes incurred by both government and the regulated community.

Regulatory staff have significant expertise in environmental management practices which could be of benefit to applicants. This resource is often wasted when their responsibilities limit them to reviewing the applicant's permit application.

Few incentives, and in some cases disincentives, exist to report deviations from permit conditions in a timely manner - especially when such deviations are discovered during a "self-audit". As a result, harmful effects to the environment may linger on, or may never be brought to light.

lll Objectives and Incentives

The objectives and expectations of the parties to this agreement include:

Government Industry/Agriculture

Improve compliance with regulations Improve compliance with regulations

Net improvement in the environment Net improvement in the environment

Reduce costs of permit review and Reduce costs of permit renewal
field inspection applications

Better working relationship with the Better working relationship with
regulated facility government

Simplify paperwork and reporting Reduce complexity in rules and

Opportunity to train staff in place- Certainty - long-term assurance of
based management, and cross- business operation
media permitting and compliance

Create a process that may be COP to replace current short-term
transferable to other facilities permits

IV Implementation

In the development and implementation of the COP, the parties agree to utilize the following techniques to the greatest extent economically and environmentally in order to achieve the stated objectives:

Government Industry/Agriculture

Courtesy Inspections Employee Training

Technical Support Higher Emissions Standards than
required by rule

Operating Procedure Review Employee Involvement/Empowerment

Holistic Approach - consider impact Self-Audit
of facility on entire ecosystem

Open communications Open communications

Team Permitting Revise policies to require staff to comply with COP as a condition of continued

Revise approach to penalty Apply Best Management Practices
assessment to reflect real impact
of violation

Implement a "Self-Audit" process Upgrade technology to incorporate
that will encourage facilities to Best Available Control Technology
review their compliance without the
data being used to punish them

5 year renewal of COP 5 year renewal of COP

The Department of Environmental Protection will accept lead agency role, for coordinating the review of the Comprehensive Operating Plan with all other affected agencies.

V Duration

This agreement is intended to cover the period during which the Comprehensive Operating Plan is being developed, reviewed and approved by all parties. In the event that items are discovered during the implementation of this project that require remediation and/or violate current regulations, all parties agree to cooperate to resolve the item expeditiously and within the spirit of this agreement.

This innovative approach to regulation will require significant flexibility to modify existing federal, state and local permitting processes. A federal XL project has been requested from USEPA to facilitate this.

A strategic objective is for this pilot project to be completed prior to the 1996 legislative session. Hence, this approach can be described and demonstrated to the members during the session as an example of a better way to do business between government and the regulated community.

This agreement will be superseded upon the issuance of the Comprehensive Operating Plan.

Any party may terminate their inclusion in this agreement at any time upon 60 days written notice to the other parties.

VI Signatures




Boiler #1 A026-161244 3/23/89 3/23/94
Boiler #2 A026-162365 4/18/89 4/16/94
Boiler #3 A026-230947 10/19/93 10/19/98
Dryer A026-161241 3/23/89 3/23/94
Drinking Water WC26-227842 4/7/93 4/7/98
Industrial WW/GW Mon I026-224209 1/29/93 11/19/95
Domestic Wastewater IN1-94 9/23/93 10/1/94
SARA 111 33935 3/1/94
Stormwater Runoff (EPA) in progress


County Occup.Lic. 391500-08561152 9/30/94
Citrus Con. Op. Lic. 4009 8/2/93 7/31/94
Citrus Fruit Dealers Lic. 317 8/2/93 7/31/94
Bureau of ATF
Food Establishment Lic. L14-92 9/30/92


LaBelle Harvesting Tow. 9005500376 7/6/90 7/6/95
Berry Citrus Land hds. 9103331399 4/9/91 4/9/95
Fellsmere Tower 9105540922 8/13/91 6/13/96
LaBelle/W. Haven Tower 9005500375 7/6/90 7/6/90
Lake Placid Tower 9105540923 6/13/91 6/13/96

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