News Releases from Region 09
EPA fines StarKist for failing to comply with 2018 settlement
The company will pay $84,500 in stipulated penalties for violations at its American Samoa facility
AMERICAN SAMOA – Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that StarKist Co. and its subsidiary, Starkist Samoa Co., will be assessed $84,500 in penalties for violating the terms of a 2018 settlement designed to remedy deficiencies at their tuna processing facility in American Samoa to achieve environmental compliance.
“EPA will continue to work closely with StarKist to ensure the needed safety and pollution control upgrades are realized, per our agreement,” said EPA Pacific Southwest Regional Administrator Mike Stoker. “With our American Samoa EPA partners, we will protect Pago Pago Harbor and the marine environment of American Samoa.”
StarKist violated the 2018 settlement on multiple occasions when it made unauthorized discharges from the facility to Pago Pago Harbor, including one incident where StarKist discharged 80,000 gallons of wastewater to the inner harbor. The company also violated the consent decree terms on 27 days when wastewater was routed around one of the required treatment measures to bypass a step in the wastewater treatment process.
Under the 2018 settlement, StarKist paid a $6.5 million penalty to resolve violations of federal environmental laws. The company was also required to make upgrades to reduce water pollution and the risk of releases of hazardous substances. In addition, StarKist agreed to provide American Samoa with $88,000 in emergency equipment for responding to chemical releases.
Starkist Samoa Co. owns and operates the tuna processing facility, located on Route 1 on the Island of Tutuila in American Samoa. Starkist Samoa Co. is a subsidiary of StarKist Co., which is owned by Korean company Dongwon Industries. StarKist Co. is the world’s largest supplier of canned tuna. Its American Samoa facility processes and cans tuna for human consumption and processes fish byproducts into fishmeal and fish oil.
For information on the 2018 settlement, please visit: https://19january2021snapshot.epa.gov/newsreleases/us-epa-american-samoa-reach-revised-settlement-starkist
For more information on the agreement and on the statutes it covers, please visit: https://19january2021snapshot.epa.gov/enforcement/starkist-clean-water-act-clean-air-act-resource-conservation-and-recovery-and-emergency
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