Texas, Okla., Oil Producers Fined over SPCC Rules

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency fined one Texas and two Oklahoma companies $2,500 for violating federal http://www.epa.gov/oilspill Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasure (SPCC) regulations outlined under the Clean Water Act, according to a May 11 press release.

Federal inspections in February and March of oil production facilities found numerous violations. For example, inspections and tests required by SPCC regulations were not in accordance with written procedures, and spill prevention briefings were not scheduled and conducted periodically. The inspections also revealed personnel working at the facilities had no training in several areas, including

  • operation and maintenance of equipment to prevent discharges;
  • discharge procedure protocols;
  • general facility operations; and
  • applicable pollution control laws, rules and regulations.

The agency assessed a $900 fine on Noble Energy, Inc., of Houston; an $850 fine on Southwest Petroleum Corp. of Drumright; and a $750 fine on Marjo Operating Co. Inc. of Tulsa.

As part of an Expedited Settlement Agreement with EPA, the companies have provided certification that all identified deficiencies have been corrected.

SPCC regulations require facilities to provide oil spill prevention, preparedness and response to prevent oil discharges. The SPCC program helps protect our nation’s water quality. A spill of only one gallon of oil can contaminate one million gallons of water.