The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (Ohio EPA) still wants Rover Pipeline LLC to submit a stormwater permit application and pay $2.3 million in fines, and the regulator has asked the state attorney general (AG) to assist in enforcement, Director Craig Butler said Wednesday.
Butler said during a conference call with media that he sent a letter Wednesday to Ohio AG Mike DeWine asking for help in pursuing a stormwater permit from Rover. But with Rover and Ohio EPA at an impasse in negotiations, the dispute could end up in court, he said.
While Rover has completed Ohio EPA’s clean-up requirements following a drilling fluids spill earlier this year, the state regulator still wants the pipeline to apply for a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) stormwater permit, part of a series of unilateral orders issued in July.
Ohio EPA took the "unfortunate, unprecedented step" to issue those unilateral orders after the agency and Rover could not agree on a consent order to resolve numerous alleged environmental violations occurring during the project's construction, which began earlier this year.
As for the proposed $2.3 million fine, that total includes about $2 million in civil penalties, with the rest covering Ohio EPA's monitoring, oversight and emergency response costs, Butler said.Read the whole article by clicking here.
We received an email containing the following statement in response to Butler's comments from Craig Stevens, spokesperson for the Grow America’s Infrastructure Now (GAIN) Coalition:
“Regulations are put into place to create a predicable set of rules for companies to follow; and the Rover Pipeline project has been planned, vetted, and approved after an exhaustive regulatory process that has lasted more than three years. Stakeholders should want to see the safe, successful completion of the Rover Pipeline. Bullying industry through the media is not the way to achieve that goal.”
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