River Country Cooperative pays $15,988 for petroleum storage tank violations in South St. Paul

Contact: Stephen Mikkelson (218) 316-3887

River Country Cooperative has paid a $15,988 civil penalty to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) for petroleum storage tank violations at its facility in South St. Paul.

An MPCA staff inspection showed that River Country Cooperative failed to conduct required inspections of three steel petroleum-storage tanks in 2014 and 2019, and failed to keep proper records. These kinds of tanks are supposed to be inspected externally every five years, and internally every ten years.

In addition to paying the civil penalty, River Country Cooperative had to have an authorized inspector perform external and internal inspections of the tanks and document that the inspections were performed.

MPCA rules and regulations are designed to protect human health and the environment by limiting pollution emissions and discharges from facilities. When companies do not fully comply with regulatory requirements, the resulting pollution can be harmful to people and the environment.

When calculating penalties, the MPCA takes into account how seriously the violations affected the environment, whether they were first-time or repeat violations, and how promptly the violations were reported to authorities. The agency also attempts to recover the economic benefit the company gained by failing to comply with environmental laws in a timely manner.