BP agrees to $8 million fine in connection with refinery violations

BP agreed to pay an $8 million penalty and invest more than $400 million in state-of-the-art pollution controls in response to alleged violations of the Clean Air Act at its Whiting, Indiana refinery.

The settlement, announced this afternoon, comes after BP was sued over the alleged violations that included failing to use good air pollution control practices at the plant and lack of technology necessary to lower emissions of toxic gases.

Under the settlement, BP will spend $9.5 million on projects to reduce carbon pollution and emissions, and the company would install equipment that will recover and reuse waste gases, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

Those controls should remove 4,000 tones of air pollution per year, the EPA said in a release.

“This settlement secures a significant penalty, requires state-of-the-art controls, and is a fair and just resolution that will address BP’s violations,” said Ignacia S. Moreno, Assistant Attorney General for the Environment and Natural Resources Division of the Department of Justice. “BP’s agreement to install fenceline monitoring will also ensure that residents have access to critical information about pollution that may be affecting their community.”

The government had asked for civil penalties of as much as $27,500 a day for each violation before March 15, 2004, $32,500 a day a violation from March 16, 2004 to Jan. 11, 2009 and up to $37,500 for each violation a day after Jan. 11, 2009.