Trident Seafoods Corp. has agreed with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to pay a $2.5 million civil penalty and invest millions in seafood processing waste controls to settle alleged violations of the Clean Water Act.
The giant seafood processor agreed to invest an estimated $30 million to $40 million, and potentially more, in source control and waste pile remediation measures. Those measures include building a fishmeal plant in Naknek, Alaska. The plant will have the capacity to handle at least 30 million pounds of seafood processing waste annually, taking in both its own fish waste and potentially that of other local processors.
Trident has also agreed to reduce the amount of seafood processing waste discharged from the Akutan, Cordova, St. Paul and Ketchikan, Alaska, facilities and monitor the amount of seafood processing waste discharged into Starrigavan Bay in Sitka, Alaska. The actions taken will reduce Trident’s fish processing discharges by a total of more than 105 million pounds annually, the EPA said in a press release.
“Today’s settlement is truly a ‘game changer’,” said Dennis McLerran, EPA Regional Administrator in Seattle. “Trident is definitely changing course and seriously investing in waste management and increased fish meal plant capacity. We share Trident’s view that this settlement will be better for the environment as well as their bottom line. We’re establishing a new 'best management practices' yardstick for Alaska’s seafood processing industry.”
EPA alleged that Trident committed more than 480 violations of the Clean Water Act involving its discharges. For more information on the settlement and a copy of the consent decree, go to: http://epa.gov/compliance/resources/cases/civil/cwa/tridentseafoods.html