Geismar, Louisiana – Mismanagement of Hazardous Waste

Innophos Addresses Mismanagement of Hazardous Waste at Louisiana Facility Under Settlement Agreement

Contact: Joe Hubbard or Jennah Durant at 214-665-2200 or r6press@epa.gov

DALLAS – (Jan. 12, 2017) The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today announced that Innophos has agreed to cease sending hazardous waste from the company’s facility in Geismar, Louisiana, to an adjacent facility that was not permitted for hazardous waste treatment, storage and disposal. The agreement resolves alleged violations of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). Innophos will also pay a $1,398,000 civil penalty.

Innophos manufactures purified phosphoric acid from merchant-grade acid at its facility in Geismar, Louisiana. Innophos sent hazardous waste streams to a neighboring phosphoric acid manufacturing facility that produces acid from phosphate ore. One waste stream, called RP pondwater, consisted of an acidic stream contaminated with arsenic, cadmium and chromium. The other waste stream, called raffinate, consisted of a concentrated acid stream contaminated with cadmium and chromium.

Today’s settlement requires Innophos to cease shipments of RP Pondwater waste to a facility not authorized to receive it, a measure that Innophos has already implemented. The settlement also requires Innophos to modify the way the raffinate stream is handled by disposing of the waste only in disposal units that are authorized to accept it or by treating the waste on-site.Today’s settlement requires Innophos to cease sending RP pondwater waste to a facility not authorized to receive it, a measure that Innophos has already implemented. The settlement also requires Innophos to modify the way the raffinate stream is handled by disposing of the waste only at facilities that are authorized to accept it or by treating the waste on-site.

The violations were discovered during an EPA inspection of the Geismar facility in 2004. Innophos has already made changes to come into compliance with regards to the RP pondwater waste stream by modifying its filter process, and is pursuing an underground injection control well permit for disposal of the raffinate waste stream.

This settlement supports EPA’s National Enforcement Initiative to reduce pollution from mining and mineral processing.

With the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality as co-plaintiff, the United States, on behalf of EPA, has lodged a consent decree and filed a complaint in the Middle District U.S. Court in Louisiana. The filing of the complaint and lodging of the consent decree will be followed by a 45-day public comment period. Information about submitting public comment and a copy of the consent decree are available at www.justice.gov/enrd/Consent_Decrees.html.

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3 thoughts on “Geismar, Louisiana – Mismanagement of Hazardous Waste

  1. Is the neighboring one the one that is or used to be owned by Freeport McMoran? Or is this one? Recall the Jim Bob Moffat scandal where he called people ignorant for not wanting him to let radioactive gypsum to be dumped in the river even though people drink from the river?

      • There used to be more details easliy found a few years ago but this is good: “Gypsum dumping in the Mississippi barred
        By Garry Boulard, Special to The Christian Science Monitor FEBRUARY 9, 1987
        BATON ROUGE, LA. — Rejecting a plan announced last year by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Louisiana has refused to allow the dumping of radioactive gypsum into the Mississippi River… environmentalists, along with the New Orleans Sewage and Water Board, said that the gypsum, containing radioactive uranium and radium, was potentially dangerous to some water supplies in the area.
        Chemical company representatives said their failure to win a dumping permit could endanger more than 7,100 area jobs. Jim Bob Moffett, chairman of Freeport-McMoRan Inc. in New Orleans, one of the four companies included in the dumping plan, said that there is no more land left on company property in which to bury the waste and that it would be too expensive to haul it away.” Entire article here:
        http://www.csmonitor.com/1987/0209/adump-f.html

        Related:
        http://www.greens.org/s-r/11/11-22.html
        http://www.multinationalmonitor.org/hyper/mm0496.05.html

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