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Iowa grain processor fined for Clean Water Act violations

By Stephanie Ostrowski | May 1, 2013


Lenexa, Kan. (Legal Newsline) - An Iowa company allegedly violated the federal Clean Water Act in 2011 and has agreed to pay a $129,000 civil penalty to resolve.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) announcement on April 16, Grain Processing Corporation (GPC) of Muscatine, Iowa, failed to comply with its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) monitoring requirements by taking unrepresentative flow measurements and not conducting settle-ability tests.

GPC also failed to maintain all facilities and control systems by exceeding the effluent limitations for biochemical oxygen demand, total suspended solids, and temperature and pH levels, according to the EPA.

After EPA Region 7 issued GPC an order on July 29, 2011 requiring the facility to correct the violations, GPC came into compliance.

"Discharge permits are one of the Clean Water Act's most important tools to protect our waters' health and productivity," said EPA Region 7 Administrator Karl Brooks. "EPA takes NPDES violations very seriously and this penalty sends a message to GPC and others that protecting our waters is an important part of their operations."

Negative impacts on the receiving water, the Mississippi River, can result from effluent limitation violations such as malfunctioning equipment or lead to situations where the wastewater treatment plant's operation, including the pollutants in the effluent, are not accurately known or documented.

By agreeing to the settlement, GPC has certified that it is in compliance with the Clean Water Act.

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