National Cooperative Refinery Association to Pay $700,000 in Penalties for Violations at Kansas Refinery and Storage Facility
Contact Information: Chris Whitley, 913-551-7394, firstname.lastname@example.org
(Kansas City, Kan., March 27, 2012) - The National Cooperative Refinery Association (NCRA) has agreed to pay $700,000 in penalties to the United States and the State of Kansas, and perform a series of injunctive relief actions, to settle violations of federal environmental laws and the Kansas State Implementation Plan at its petroleum refinery and underground storage facility in McPherson County, Kan.
As part of a consent decree lodged yesterday in U.S. District Court in Kansas City, Kan., NCRA will pay $475,000 in penalties to the United States and $225,000 to the State of Kansas. As a part of the settlement, NCRA has agreed to spend approximately $745,000 on supplemental environmental projects involving the purchase of emergency response equipment and services for the benefit of citizens and emergency response agencies in McPherson County.
NCRA owns and operates an 85,000-barrel-per-day petroleum refinery on Iron Horse Road in the city of McPherson, Kan., and an associated underground product storage facility in the nearby unincorporated community of Conway, Kan.
According to a complaint by the U.S. Department of Justice, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Kansas Attorney General’s Office and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, NCRA:
The consent decree requires NCRA to perform a series of injunctive relief actions to address its non-compliance issues and enhance future compliance through greater emphasis on the Risk Management Program. These include performing an applicability study at the refinery and underground storage facility, providing detailed tank inspection timelines and information, and documenting the resolution of process hazard analyses and compliance audit findings.
For the CAA violations, the relief involves training for start-up procedures and revision to applicable limits for the refinery’s Unicracker Unit Heater.
Relief associated with the EPCRA and CERCLA violations includes completion of a compliance review for Tier II, TRI and episodic release reports. It also includes the submission of an associated report to EPA, retroactive release reporting, and release report training.
NCRA’s supplemental environmental projects, totaling at least $745,000, are designed to further the goals of EPCRA and the Risk Management Program, which seek to prevent accidental chemical releases, minimize the consequences of accidents that do occur, and enable local emergency responders to plan and respond effectively to chemical accidents.
The consent decree is subject to a 30-day public comment period and final approval by the court.
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