EPA Announces Enforcement Discretion Policy For COVID-19 Pandemic
In a memo titled, COVID-19 Implications for EPA’s Enforcement and Compliance Assurance Program, EPA issued an enforcement policy announcing that they will not seek penalties for non-compliance with federal environmental obligations during the COVID-19 crisis. The policy is retroactive to 3/13/2020 and covers Title V air permits, NPDES wastewater and stormwater permits, TRI reporting, RCRA hazardous waste storage times, and more. Examples include the inability to conduct air permit monitoring (visible emissions surveys), stack testing, storage tank inspections, NPDES monitoring due to manpower limitations, plant shutdown, lab turnaround times, and inability to secure contractors. The footnote on page 3 of the memo contains provides additional examples. The policy requires documentation of the reason non-compliance is related to the pandemic, steps to correct, and other guidance on compliance.
The environmental compliance experts at Liberty Environmental can assist you in the navigation of environmental compliance during this difficult time.