Industrial Organic Chemicals Compliance Incentive Program
The Compliance Incentive Program was an outreach effort encouraging companies in the industrial organic chemical sector (SIC Code 2869) to perform environmental compliance audits and to take advantage of EPA's audit policy to self-report any violations uncovered during such audits.
Purpose of the Program
- disseminate information about the audit policy, especially to small businesses;
- market the audit policy - as a tool to improve compliance; and
- direct interested facilities to resources that may assist in performing audits, including compliance assistance tools and audit protocols developed by OC, and state resources to assist small businesses (e.g., Small Business Assistance Programs)
In August 1998, EPA sent letters to approximately 1,000 industrial organic chemical facilities. To participate in the program, facilities had until January 31, 1999, to perform voluntary environmental audits of their operations, identify potential areas of noncompliance uncovered by the audit, and report these findings to EPA. After January 1999, EPA and authorized states began increased inspections in the industrial organic chemical sector. The letter also directed interested facilities to resources to assist them in understanding their obligations under environmental statutes and in performing environmental audits.
Under this program, EPA received self-disclosures covering all major environmental programs. 19 companies disclosed violations at 51 different facilities. At 32 of the facilities, violations were identified under more than one media program. Ten companies disclosed violations at several plants.
EPA is nearing completion of the audit disclosure cases which resulted from the Agency's Compliance Incentive Program (CIP).
Examples of Multi-Facility Cases
Rohm & Haas Company audited three facilities in Bristol, Pennsylvania and disclosed 16 separate violations. EPA issued a Notice of Determination resolving this matter on September 29, 1999. Violations included air emissions monitoring under the clean Air Act (CAA), Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), and Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). EPA determined that Rohm & Haas had complied with all of the conditions of the Audit Policy and had not realized a significant economic advantage. Therefore, EPA waived 100% of the gravity based penalties.
Georgia Pacific Resins: Georgia Pacific reported 22 violations at three facilities, including failure to notify of CAA compliance status and exceeding CAA permit limits, as well as violations of RCRA, the Spill Prevention Control and Countermeasures (SPCC) provisions of the Clean Water Act, and the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA). EPA determined that Rohm & Haas had complied with all of the conditions of the Audit Policy and had not realized a significant economic advantage. Therefore, EPA waived 100% of the gravity based penalties and issued a Notice of Determination resolving this matter on September 7, 2000..
Bayer Corporation disclosed a total of 27 violations at 4 facilities. The violations included failure to monitor for equipment leaks under CAA, and violations of RCRA, TSCA, CAA, and CWA. EPA determined that Bayer obtained economic benefit from one of its CWA violations and one of its RCRA violations. EPA entered into a Consent Agreement with Bayer, under which Bayer paid $26,303 in economic benefit and a $2,000 penalty for additional violations EPA identified in the course of reviewing the disclosure. The Environmental Appeals Board signed the Final Order on November 27, 2000.
Henkel/Cognis: Henkel Corporation disclosed 15 violations at 5 facilities, including failure to monitor for equipment leaks (CAA-LDAR) at 2 facilities and constructing a new air contamination source without prior approval at 2 facilities, as well as RCRA and CWA stormwater violations. EPA has entered into a Consent Agreement with Cognis, successor to Henkel, which collects an economic benefit of $33,000 realized by Henkel.
For more information concerning the EPA Industrial Organic Chemicals Compliance Incentives Program, contact Mary Andrews at (202) 564-4011, firstname.lastname@example.org. Information concerning EPA's Audit Policy may be obtained by contacting Leslie Jones at (202) 564-5123, email@example.com.