Environmental Protection

DOJ Announces Wastewater Plant Settlement

The settlement will resolve violations of the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act.

Houston-based CCS (USA) Inc. and several of its operating subsidiaries will pay a $2.5 million civil penalty in connection with operations at its Shreveport, La., industrial wastewater treatment plant, the Department of Justice, EPA, and the state of Louisiana announced July 10. The settlement will resolve violations of the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act.

According to DOJ, CCS acquired the plant in 2006 when it bought two closely held companies owned by John Emerson Tuma, who is serving a five-year prison sentence for illegally discharging untreated and improperly treated wastewater from the plant into the Red River and Shreveport Publicly Owned Treatment Works. Inspections by EPA and the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality following the sale uncovered these and other violations, including unpermitted storage and improper handling of hazardous wastes and sludge, unpermitted stormwater discharges, and non-compliance with Clean Air Act requirements for benzene-containing wastes.

CCS subsequently stopped wastewater treatment operations at the facility and, under EPA supervision, removed the hazardous wastes stored there.

The $2.5 million will be split evenly between the United States and state of Louisiana.

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