United States – The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has ordered Sims Metal Management (SMM), located at the Port of Redwood City in California, to comply with federal Clean Water Act laws following inspections that found evidence of unlawful discharges of PCBs, mercury, lead, copper and zinc into San Francisco Bay. The South Bay facility is home to one of the largest metal shredders in the Bay Area.
During an inspection in March last year, enforcement officers found evidence that pollutants had been discharged to Redwood Creek – a direct tributary to San Francisco Bay, according to the EPA. The EPA inspected the facility again in August, taking samples of debris and soils in the areas that flow to San Francisco Bay where the facility conducts shipping and receiving activities. The results of the samples demonstrated elevated levels of PCBs, mercury, lead, copper and zinc.
An EPA order received on December 21 required SMM to submit a revised storm-water pollution prevention plan, and to update monitoring and sampling within 30 days; to develop and implement storm-water pollution counter-measures; and to develop and submit a plan within 90 days to eliminate discharges to Redwood Creek within one year. SMM is co-operating with the EPA to address the requirements of the order.