EPA reaches agreement with Valero over violations of Clean Air Act

Posted at 3:57 PM, Oct 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-23 17:10:20-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The Environmental Protection Agency has reached an agreement with Valero Energy Corp. and subsidiaries across seven states for violations of the Clean Air Act.

The complaint and proposed agreement have been filed with the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas. Within the complaint, 16 claims are detailed.

Complaints span seven states. In December 2019, Valero self-disclosed three violations that occurred at its East Plant in Corpus Christi from September 2017.

As part of the agreement with the EPA, Valero must perform two benzene reduction measures at its Corpus Christi East Plant by December 31, 2021.

“Working with EPA we reached this agreement, and as a result have already implemented an improved robust Fuels Management System to ensure compliance with all regulations that apply to gasoline and diesel produced, imported, or blended at Valero’s refineries, terminals, and other product supply operations,” said Lillian Riojas, Valero Spokesperson in a written statement to KRIS 6. “The Fuels Management System includes operational safeguards, protocols, audits, and more uniformity across our labs and other processes.”

The first measure has been completed by Valero. The approximate cost for these two measures is $1.775 million.

Upon completion of the second measure, it will have the collective impact of reducing benzene emissions by at least 583 pounds per year, according to the agreement.

Under the terms of the consent decree, Valero will pay a civil penalty of $2.85 million to the federal government in addition to providing several progress report updates at pre-set intervals.