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National Iron & Steel "Minimill" Compliance Incentive Program

In August 2000, EPA sent letters to 41 minimills with a relatively good compliance history inviting them to conduct a voluntary multimedia audit and self-disclosure program. Under this program, violations disclosed within six months of letters would be resolved pursuant to the Audit Policy. After the letters were sent, EPA met on several occasions with the Steel Manufacturers Association, its counsel, and several steel companies to discuss the initiative and answer any questions.

Of the 41 minimills receiving letters, 28 minimills responded to EPA. EPA also received letters from 10 minimills that did not receive invitation letters, but chose to audit, disclose and correct violations under the Audit Policy. In total, EPA received letters from 24 companies that disclosed violations at 38 minimills. To date, EPA has resolved disclosures with 23 minimills, representing 16 companies, for no penalty. (If the economic benefit associated with violations is less than $5000, EPA is not collecting a penalty.) EPA has collected a penalty for violations disclosed at 2 minimills representing one company. The remaining disclosures require more analysis and/or further corrective action by the companies. EPA expects to resolve the remaining disclosures in FY 2002.

Under the initiative, several companies cleaned up spilled K061 hazardous waste (electric arc furnace dust) or changed K061 management practices to eliminate releases into stormwater or air. Some companies repaired cracked secondary containment around storage tanks to limit effects should a release occur. Minimills have historically had problems with RCRA recordkeeping, labeling, storage, and self-monitoring requirements. As a result of the audits, the industry better understands these requirements and their importance in properly managing hazardous waste.

The links below are to the press releases and other documents related to the iron and steel minimill settlements.

For more information concerning the Iron & Steel National Minimill Self-Disclosure Initiative, contact Mike Calhoun at (202) 564-6031, calhoun.michael@epa.gov or Melissa Raack at 202-564-7039, raack.melissa@epa.gov . For more information concerning EPA's Audit Policy, contact Leslie Jones at (202) 564-5123, jones.leslie@epa.gov.

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