Cargill Inc. recently agreed to settle allegations that it violated the Clean Water Act (CWA) at two different oil storage facilities located in Blair, Neb., and Eddyville, Iowa. As part of the settlement, Cargill will pay a civil penalty of $187,500.

The Clean Water Act requires facilities that store large quantities of oil to develop a facility response plan (FRP) that outlines procedures for addressing "worst-case" discharges of oil. By being prepared and by conducting required response drills, facilities are better situated to prevent environmental harm from such releases.

Each of Cargill's two facilities produces and stores more than 1 million gallons of oil. Combined, the two facilities have a total estimated storage capacity of more than 7 million gallons.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) identified the lack of a response plan during 2013 site visits at Cargill's facilities in Blair, Neb., and Eddyville, Iowa. Each facility required a facility response plan (FRP) because the storage capacity of its denatured ethanol tanks exceeded 1 million gallons. As a result of the visits, Cargill submitted signed and effective FRPs in June 2014.

"The Clean Water Act requires large oil storage facilities to have adequate response plans to prevent a spill from turning into a large-scale environmental disaster," said Karl Brooks, EPA Region 7 administrator. "The lack of a facility response plan for these facilities can have serious consequences for humans and the environment in the case of a spill. This settlement helps protect the communities of Blair, Neb., and Eddyville, Iowa, if spills were to occur."

For more information, visit www.epa.gov.