Search Site
Menu

EPA Announces National Enforcement Initiatives, effective October 1, 2016

On February 18, 2016, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced its National Enforcement Initiatives for the 2017 to 2019 fiscal years.  Effective October 1, 2016, EPA will keep four current National Enforcement Initiatives, add two new initiatives, and expand on one during the next three years.  Therein, EPA also announced the ending of its initiative for reducing pollution from mineral processing operations.

The four, current National Enforcement Initiatives to remain include: reducing air pollution from the largest sources; ensuring energy extraction activities comply with environmental laws; keeping raw sewage and contaminated stormwater out of the Nation’s Waters; and preventing animal waste from contaminating surface and groundwater.

In the air context, EPA plans to expand its initiative to cut toxic air pollutants by addressing illegal and excess emissions of hazardous air pollutants (“HAP”) from leaks and flares at refineries and chemical plants.  According to the EPA, its recent monitoring data shows facilities are emitting more HAP emissions than they report.  Therefore, EPA will expand this initiative, which started in 2004, to include emissions monitoring from large product storage tanks and hazardous waste generator and treatment, storage, and disposal facilities.

A new National Enforcement Initiative for 2017 aims to reduce risks of accidental releases at industrial and chemical facilities.  The EPA reports that thousands of these facilities, many of which located in low-income or minority communities, manufacture and/or store extremely hazardous materials.  Catastrophic accidents at these facilities, historically averaging 150 per year, cause serious risk of harm to human health and the environment.  Thus, under this new initiative, and following revisions to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s 2011 National Emphasis Program, EPA will focus on reducing risk through innovative prevention measures and improving response capabilities.

A second, new initiative for the next three years will focus on keeping industrial pollutants out of the Nation’s Waters.  The EPA has identified certain industrial sectors, like chemical and metal manufacturing, mining, and food processing, as “disproportionate” contributions to water pollution.  Driven by water pollution data, EPA will focus on these industries, looking to cut illegal and unpermitted discharges pursuant to the Clean Water Act.

Owners and operators in these regulated industries, especially those with facilities in more than one state, need take note.  The EPA is particularly interested in a “consistent national strategy to achieve compliance” and multi-state operators appear to be in the EPA’s crosshairs.

The attorneys at Lieberman Blecher & Sinkevich P.C. regularly assist clients in working through regulatory compliance issues with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and the EPA.  If you have a question about environmental regulatory compliance, you can contact our office to discuss your concerns with a member of our staff.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Our Attorneys

Recent Twitter Posts

  • Trenton Water Works has removed 25 percent of lead pipes throughout its service area. https://t.co/KUvhMsJlvU
    5 days ago
  • Opposition grows to big warehouses in small NJ towns. https://t.co/CMjgYaPMRP
    5 days ago
  • Groups plead with Governor Murphy to stop plans for new gas-fired power plant along the Passaic River in Newark. https://t.co/0yODyXEI3C
    5 days ago
  • Murphy Administration releases mapping tool to help NJ residents identify lead exposure risks in housing. https://t.co/oRL7gPVoeq
    2 months ago

Recent Blog Posts

Environmental Insurance Dispute to be Heard in New Jersey courts

On December 30, 2021 the Appellate Division of the Superior Court decided Getty Prop. Corp. v. St. Paul Fire & Marine Ins. Co. Getty Properties Corp. (“Getty”) filed an appeal
Read More
Environmental Insurance Dispute to be Heard in New Jersey courts

Governor Murphy’s NJDEP Proposes New Rule to Limit Carbon Dioxide Emissions

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy’s administration proposed a new rule to combat greenhouse gas emissions, just before the start of his second term in office. The New Jersey Department of
Read More
Governor Murphy’s NJDEP Proposes New Rule to Limit Carbon Dioxide Emissions

Municipal Clerk can Accept Electronic Signatures

On November 30, 2021, the Appellate Division further enforced and upheld a new staple of the Covid-19 world: electronic signatures. In Township Of Montclair Committee of Petitioners et al. v.
Read More
Municipal Clerk can Accept Electronic Signatures

Appellate Division Declines to Allow Developer’s Four-Month-Late DOT Permit Appeal, Citing No Change in Circumstances

A Maple Shade Township developer’s appeal of permit conditions was untimely when they appealed four months past the deadline and without any change in circumstances justifying deadline relaxation, the Appellate
Read More
Appellate Division Declines to Allow Developer’s Four-Month-Late DOT Permit Appeal, Citing No Change in Circumstances

In the media

  • Gulf Coast Town Center facing foreclosure

    Naples Daily News, September 16, 2015

    Wells Fargo filed a lawsuit Sept. 8 against an affiliate of CBL & Associates, the owners of the decadeold, 1.2 million-square-foot mall in south Fort Myers for a $190.9 million unpaid loan. The center has 94 stores on 204 acres, with such anchors as Super Target, Belk, Best Buy, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Marshalls and Costco...

    Read More
  • Town liable for private company's leaking underground tanks, court rules

    NJ.com Jul 26, 2017

    CRANFORD -- A couple that owned a businesses in town and became sick from leaking underground tanks owned by an adjacent business can sue the township for damages because the tanks were partially ...

    Read More
  • Dark Waters: How a Class Action Catapulted NJ to Forefront of 'Forever Chemicals' Battle

    NJ Law Journal Jan 09, 2020

    As property owners become increasingly aware of PFAS contamination, and as individuals exposed to PFAS learn of the health risks associated with exposure, liability will likely affect entire supply chains.

    Read More
  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4
  5. 5
Contact Our Firm

Quick Contact Form