Part 3. In January of 2000, Koch Industries Inc. agreed to pay $35 million in penalties for leaking 3 million gallons of oil into lakes and streams in six states. In total there were 300 spills across the nation in #Kansas, #Texas,# Oklahoma, #Louisiana, #Missouri and #Alabama.
It was the highest civil fine levied against one company under the Clean Water Act.
The spills killed thousands of fish and birds.
Koch Industries was ordered to pay $30 million in fines and $5 million to preserve wetlands in Kansas and Oklahoma, to conduct a pipeline safety study and to help environmental programs in Texas. The settlement resolved two lawsuits.
Half of the $30 million went to cleaning up the oil spills and the other half went to the state of Texas which joined in the lawsuits.
EPA Administrator Carol Browner called Koch’s actions “egregious violations and said the fine “sends a strong message that those who try to profit by polluting our environment pay a price.” The government was originally seeking $71-214 million.
Janet Reno said “this record civil penalty puts those who transport hazardous materials on notice. We will not let you foul our water and spoil our land by breaking the law.”
The complaints were filed 1995-1997. Most of the preventable spills were caused by corrosion and under the settlement, Koch Industries was ordered to examine 2,500 miles of pipeline and repair all the defects.
In 2000, Koch Industries operated more than 35,000 miles of oil and gas pipeline in the United States and Canada.
Payne County, Oklahoma – 221,000 gals
Corpus Christi Bay—90,300 gals
Wichita Kansas—79,000 gals
Tulsa, Oklahoma—103,950 gals
Dallas Fort Worth—62,790 gals
Part 4 to come.