Landowners, Businesses Ordered to Halt Hazwaste Pollution at Chemical Processing Site

EPA Region 7 has ordered the owners of a Clark County, Mo., property, along with an Illinois minerals brokerage firm, and a Missouri company that processes materials at the location, to immediately—by today-- halt the handling and processing of hazardous materials that EPA says have contaminated the property and an adjacent stream.

TNT General Contracting Inc., of Kahoka, Mo.; Webb Minerals LLC, of Quincy, Ill.; and the Carl and Carol Trump Trust, of Kahoka, are the respondents of a unilateral administrative order issued by EPA in Kansas City, Kan. The order directs the respondents to take a series of actions in regard to the site, including the development of a plan to clean up the property and any surrounding areas that may be polluted.

”This case was initiated by our partners at the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, who performed an initial inspection for hazardous waste issues at the site, and then returned to collect soil and water samples that confirmed the need for additional action,” EPA Regional Administrator Karl Brooks said. “EPA is well positioned to bring this enforcement action, as it involves parties outside the State of Missouri, and a potentially hazardous situation affecting water quality near the Mississippi River.”

According to EPA, TNT uses property owned by the Trump Trust in Kahoka, to blend zinc-bearing materials into zinc fertilizer ingredients for Webb Minerals. Webb Minerals owns all of the zinc-bearing materials delivered to the facility, as well as the resulting mixtures processed by TNT, and sells the processed mixtures to commercial fertilizer manufacturers for use as nutrient additives to their products.

According to the order, issued under the authority of the federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and the federal Clean Water Act (CWA), some of Webb Minerals’ zinc-bearing materials brought to the facility for processing originate from metal plating and galvanizing operations. Such material often meets the definition of a hazardous waste.

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) inspected the facility for compliance with hazardous waste management practices on March 24, 2010. Based on findings from that inspection, MDNR returned to the facility on June 16, 2010, to collect various environmental samples. Analytical results from the sampling inspection documented water quality violations in an adjacent tributary of Weaver Branch, and the presence of multiple hazardous chemicals in various containers, piles and surrounding soils on the property.

MDNR’s sampling of water from various locations on the property confirmed the discharge of boron, arsenic, copper, ammonia, zinc, chromium, cobalt, manganese, nickel, selenium, aluminum, barium, cadmium, and 2-Butanone into the Weaver Branch tributary.

Chemicals detected by the MDNR soil sampling included zinc, barium, mercury, nickel, 2-Butanone, tetrahydrofuran, toluene, arsenic, cadmium, chromium, and lead. The inspection noted numerous piles, bags, totes, drums, and other materials stored in an abandoned manner at the facility, EPA said.

EPA’s administrative order directs the respondents to immediately develop and implement a plan describing the best management practices that will be used to prevent further discharges of pollutants from the facility to Weaver Branch and its tributaries. They must also stop receiving additional hazardous waste at the facility until the materials can be handled in compliance with all state and federal requirements. Additionally, the order requires the respondents to:

  • Identify all solid and hazardous wastes currently being treated, stored or disposed at the facility;
  • Restrict access to solid and hazardous wastes that have been disposed at the facility;
  • Obtain a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit from the State of Missouri;
  • Develop a site characterization plan to determine where hazardous wastes have been disposed at the facility, including an investigation to determine the extent of off-site migration of waste; and
  • Clean up the property and any contaminated surrounding areas as necessary.

EPA’s administrative order becomes effective today, Sept. 7. The order further outlines a series of deadlines and schedules for initiation or completion of its required activities.

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