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Three Conn. Companies Provide Public with Chemical Information under EPA Settlements

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David Deegan (

BOSTON - Three Connecticut companies will report publically on their use of required toxic chemicals, creating a safer environment for the public, under the terms of three separate recent settlements with the US Environmental Protection Agency. All three settlements involve facilities thoroughly evaluating the toxic chemicals present at their facility.

In an agreement with EPA, Redland Brick Inc. of South Windsor has agreed to properly report its use of barium compounds, which was not done in 2013, 2014 and 2015. Proper reporting of chemical data aids the comprehensive planning done by federal, state, and local authorities to clean up industrial pollution or safely and effectively respond to emergency situations.

In a second agreement, Scapa Tapes North America of Windsor agreed to pay a penalty to resolve claims that it failed to properly report its use of ethylbenzene in 2013, 2014, and 2015, and vinyl acetate in 2014 and 2015.

And in the third agreement, O.F. Mossberg & Sons of North Haven agreed to properly file reports by the required deadline identifying the amount of copper it used and has improved its method for future reporting.

Companies and facilities are required to report annually on their use under the federal Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) and the Toxic Release Inventory (TRI). Complying with EPCRA and TRI helps ensure that communities are not deprived of their right to know about chemical releases that may affect public health and the environment. Now that these facilities are providing data about their use of chemicals, the local communities have access to information about the presence of chemicals in the area.

Redland, which manufactures three sizes of bricks, has also agreed to pay a penalty of $11,246 to resolve claims by EPA that it failed to accurately report its barium compounds. The case stems from a 2016 inspection of the facility after EPA noted that the company reported several chemicals near, but just under, the thresholds for reporting on its Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) form. The facility reported the barium compounds, as soon as they were notified of the error. Redland Brick is a subsidiary of Belden Holding & Acquisition, Inc., an affiliate of Belden Brick Company, LLC of Canton, Ohio.

Scapa Tapes, which makes tape products for healthcare and industrial applications, agreed to pay $58,214 to resolve claims it failed to files TRI Reporting Forms for ethylbenzene for 2013, 2014, and 2015, and vinyl acetate for 2014 and 2015. This case stemmed from a July 2016 inspection in which EPA found a clean, well-maintained facility but discovered several errors by the company when calculating the quantities of their use of ethylbenzene and vinyl acetate for 2015. Based on the revised calculations, both should have been, but were not, reported in 2015 and prior years.

Mossberg, which makes and assembles gun parts, agreed to pay a $43,419 penalty for failing to file TRI reports by the required deadline identifying the amount of copper it used during 2012, 2013 and 2014.

Under the TRI regulations, companies that use certain materials containing toxic chemicals must report each year how much of each toxic chemical is released to the environment and how much is managed through recycling, energy recovery and treatment, according to federal right-to-know laws. The information collected by EPA from industrial and federal facilities using these chemicals serves as the basis of the Toxic Release Inventory, a collection of data that can be reviewed by communities, government and industry. This information helps communities understand how manufacturers use and recycle toxic materials, as well as how they prevent accidents.

Because the information is available to the public, companies have a strong incentive to improve their environmental performance. The information is updated annually and is reported to EPA directly from facilities.

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