Ethanol Company Penalized for Failing to Develop Risk Management Plan

NEDAK Ethanol LLC, an alternative fuels manufacturer, has agreed to pay a civil penalty of $3,600 to the United States for failing to develop a risk management program and file a risk management plan for its ethanol production facility at Atkinson, Neb.

As part of an administrative civil settlement with EPA Region 7, NEDAK Ethanol has also agreed to spend at least $17,900 on a supplemental environmental project. As part of that project, the company has agreed to spend approximately $8,700 to purchase six headset radios and five handheld radios for the Atkinson Fire Department to enable more effective communications during emergency response operations. The company will also spend approximately $9,200 to purchase and install an ammonia leak detector system and combustible gases sensor at its Atkinson facility.

According to an administrative consent agreement filed by EPA in Kansas City, Kan., the Agency inspected NEDAK Ethanol’s Atkinson facility in April 2010 and found that it had not developed a risk management program nor had it filed a risk management plan. Under the federal Clean Air Act, NEDAK Ethanol was required to take those actions because its facility had quantities of flammable pentane and butane in excess of regulatory thresholds. Flammable substances commonly used in the ethanol manufacturing process can make facilities subject to risk management program regulations.

EPA enforces the risk management program regulations of the Clean Air Act with a goal of preventing accidental chemical releases and minimizing the impact of releases or other accidents that may occur.

Establishment of risk management programs and formulation of risk management plans helps companies operate responsibly, assists emergency responders by providing vital information necessary for them to address accidents and other incidents, protects the environment by preventing and minimizing damage from accidental releases, and keeps communities safer.