Enviro-Chem Inc. cited for violating air permits

Contact: Risikat Adesaogun, 651-757-2056

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) has cited Enviro-Chem, a precious metals recovery facility based in Rogers, for air emissions permit violations. The company has made corrections and agreed to pay a $26,000 civil penalty.

Enviro-Chem had an incomplete operations and maintenance plan, which left out vital information about how to properly operate the company’s afterburners. Daily operating records, and records of employee training were also missing. Equipment temperature was improperly monitored and documented, and the company also failed to have a certified operator onsite during after hours, when waste was being burned. 

Improper management of hazardous waste increases the risk of harmful contaminants being released into the air, land or water, posing a threat to human health and the environment.

To resolve the violations, the Enviro-Chem has agreed to a series of actions including creating a completed operations and maintenance plan, ensuring a certified operator is onsite at all times when waste is being burned, and adopting hazardous waste best practices to ensure there is continuous monitoring and recording of equipment temperature. 

The agreement, known as a Stipulation Agreement, is one of the tools the MPCA uses to achieve compliance with environmental laws. When calculating penalties, the agency takes into account how seriously the violation affected the environment, whether it was a first-time or repeat violation, and how promptly the violation was reported to appropriate authorities. The agency also attempts to recover the calculated economic benefit gained by failure to comply with environmental laws in a timely manner.

For a comprehensive list of enforcement actions by the MPCA, visit the agency's quarterly summary of enforcement actions webpage.