EPA's Legal Actions Net Almost 887 Million Across Five-State Region

The Environmental Protection Agency has released its end-of-year compliance and enforcement results. According to the agency, enforcement efforts in Texas during fiscal year 2010 will result in the reduction of almost fifteen million pounds of pollution. Wendy Siegle has more.
The EPA says that enforcement actions over the last year have required polluters in Arkansas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Louisiana, and Texas to invest a total of $887 million dollars in pollution controls and clean up efforts. That’s more than double the amount secured last year.

"It’s all going to be used toward treating, reducing, and eliminating environmental hazards and environmental waste."

That’s EPA’s Joe Hubbard. He says the region estimates that 83 million pounds of pollutants and 1.9 billion pounds of hazardous waste will be reduced, treated, or removed across the five-state region.

"We conduct assessments, go out to sites, visit the sites, do inspections, surprise inspections, routine inspections, to make sure companies are in compliance with environmental laws."

Exxon Mobile is one of the companies in Texas that committed environmental crimes in the last year. Hubbard says Exxon illegally stored 1.8 billion pounds of hazardous waste at a site in Pasadena and will now have to spend over $150 million dollars to get rid of it. The company was also hit with a $100 thousand dollar penalty.