A Kansas-based fertilizer company has agreed to pay a civil penalty for federal rules violations at two of its plants in Iowa and one in Kansas. Environmental Protection Agency spokesman, Ben Washburn, says Koch Nitrogen Company has agreed to pay a $380,000 penalty for violations at its Fort Dodge, Marshalltown and Dodge City, Kansas plants.
“The violations at the facility were violations of the Clean Air Act. They’re required to develop various things, such as risk management programs, ways to address emergency response and things like that,” Washburn explains. “And in this case,inspections of the facilities indicated that some of these preparations had not been made.”
The Fort Dodge and Dodge City facilities manufacture ammonia and urea-ammonium nitrate solution. The Marshalltown facility is a pipeline terminal where anhydrous ammonia is removed from an interstate pipeline or from highway tank trucks and stored on the property.
“This penalty is not for releases to the environment. This penalty is for a lack of planning for emergency situations in case there had been an accidental release,”Washburn explains. He says the planning is a key part of protecting the communities where they are located.
“It’s important for these companies to have these plans in place, not only for the safety of the public, but also for the safety of the first responders,” Washburn says. As part of the settlement, Koch Nitrogen has certified that it is in now in full compliance with Clean Air Act.