EPA Fines University of Central Missouri for Improper Waste Management

The University of Central Missouri (UCM) has agreed to pay a $14,988 civil penalty to the United States to settle allegations related to improper management of hazardous wastes at its campus in Warrensburg, Mo.

According to a consent agreement and final order filed March 12 in Kansas City, Kan., an EPA inspection of the UCM Hazardous Materials Management Facility, in October 2008 noted several violations of the federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and related Missouri state law.

The agreement alleges that UCM failed to conduct hazardous waste determinations at their points of origin, and operated as a treatment, storage and disposal facility without a proper permit. Among other noted violations, UCM also allegedly failed to comply with universal waste regulations by not storing universal waste in closed containers, and failing to properly label and identify storage containers, the agreement says.

The UCM Hazardous Materials Management Facility handles wastes from a variety of campus operations, including lab packs from chemistry and biology laboratories, waste silver from photography laboratories, and waste oil and fuels from aviation and automotive shops. The university also generates various types of universal wastes, including spent fluorescent lamps and lead-acid batteries, according to the agreement.

By signing the consent agreement, the university has certified that to the best of its knowledge it is now in compliance with the applicable RCRA requirements. As part of the agreement, UCM must conduct annual laboratory cleanouts throughout its campus to address the inventory and removal of expired, unnecessary or unwanted chemicals from its facilities. It also must develop a revised environmental management plan and a plan to train facility personnel on proper hazardous waste management procedures.

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