(June 21, 2018) - The City of Portland Bureau of Environmental Services has issued $671,128 in penalties and charges to Oregon Oils for repeated violations of its industrial wastewater discharge permit and causing clogs to a pump station in Northwest Portland.
Environmental Services issued 104 Notices of Violations against the company, located at 2515 NW 29th Avenue in Portland, and assessed civil penalties totaling $238,500. The violations include:
- Discharging fats, oils and grease at concentrations and volumes that could obstruct the City’s sewer system;
- Discharging wastewater at higher temperatures than allowed, which can damage the City’s sewer pipes, pump stations and treatment plant;
- Repeatedly clogging a nearby pump station;
- Failing to notify the City when discharges occurred as required by permit;
- Falsifying records; and
- Falsifying submeter reports.
In addition to the civil penalties, Environmental Services has billed the company $432,628 in sewer and extra strength charges for the amount of unreported wastewater discharged to the system.
These civil enforcement actions resulted from an Environmental Services investigation that began in January of repeated interference to a City sanitary pump station just downstream of the Oregon Oils discharge point. As a result, Environmental Services also revoked Oregon Oils’ industrial pretreatment permit, and Oregon Oils is not authorized to discharge until treatment technology and sampling structures are installed and Environmental Services verifies compliance.
In addition, Oregon State Police, with assistance from the US Environmental Protection Agency and Environmental Services, executed a criminal search warrant at the business in April. That criminal investigation is ongoing.
Oregon Oils has the opportunity to appeal the civil penalties and has indicated that it will.
* the Notice of Violation letter to Oregon Oils
* the Sewer and Extra Strength charges letter to Oregon Oils
The Bureau of Environmental Services provides city residents with programs to protect water quality and public health, including wastewater collection and treatment, sewer construction and maintenance, stormwater management, and stream and watershed restoration. For news updates, follow @BESPortland on Twitter and visit www.portlandoregon.gov/bes/news.
Media Contact: Diane Dulken, 503-457-7636, firstname.lastname@example.org