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Thread: The state is cracking down. Trident fined

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    Member thewhop2000's Avatar
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    Default The state is cracking down. Trident fined

    Here is a link. http://www.alaskadispatch.com/articl...ish-waste-case

    I would think that putting fish parts back into the sea only helps to feed more fish, looks like I'm wrong I guess?
    Maybe just too much in too little a space?
    If a dipnetter dips a fish and there is no one around to see/hear it, Did he really dip?

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    Yeah thats why they built a multi-million dollar fish meal plant in Cordova. Big players in most industries dole out big money to projects in our communities but unfortunately only after they've been caught doing shenanigans like this. I remember in the early part of this decade, then Gov Murkowski issued the green light to strip eggs and dump carcasses. I don't know how long that was in effect though. Fish waste isn't as bad as the human garbage and waste most coastal cities dump in the oceans, Anchorage for instance... Oceana needs to get their henchman on that..Better send em a donation on behalf of SCDA whopper





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    Default Just another form of pollution

    It is criminal that they have been getting away with this pollution for so long although it has been widely known. In this case the Feds are stepping in to do what the state is unwilling to accomplish - perhaps the fish processors have too much political pull in this state?

    Concentrated fish waste is as deadly as anything in snuffing out life but it gets little publicity from the press. Can you imagine a 40 acre dead zone for years on the slope resulting from spilled oil?


    Quote Originally Posted by thewhop2000 View Post
    Here is a link. http://www.alaskadispatch.com/articl...ish-waste-case

    I would think that putting fish parts back into the sea only helps to feed more fish, looks like I'm wrong I guess?
    Maybe just too much in too little a space?
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
    ".. ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" JFK

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    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    It is criminal that they have been getting away with this pollution for so long although it has been widely known. In this case the Feds are stepping in to do what the state is unwilling to accomplish - perhaps the fish processors have too much political pull in this state?

    Concentrated fish waste is as deadly as anything in snuffing out life but it gets little publicity from the press. Can you imagine a 40 acre dead zone for years on the slope resulting from spilled oil?
    You make a great point. If 40 acres got ruined on the slope there would be an uprising. Even after they cleaned it up there would be cries to shut donw the oil fields.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by thewhop2000 View Post
    I would think that putting fish parts back into the sea only helps to feed more fish, looks like I'm wrong I guess? Maybe just too much in too little a space?
    Fish eat nice chunky fish guts, but fish don't eat "massive carpets of gelatinous goo" up to 20 feet thick!

    The ground fish meal slurry might not even be recognizable as food. Besides, even if they wanted to eat that nasty crud, they couldn't because they can't breathe near it, since the decomposition uses up all the dissolved oxygen in the area. That's what "dead zone" really means -- no oxygen.

    Quote Originally Posted by fullbush View Post
    Fish waste isn't as bad as the human garbage and waste most coastal cities dump in the oceans
    Too true! Almost makes me stop eating fish!

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    Quote Originally Posted by kgpcr View Post
    You make a great point. If 40 acres got ruined on the slope there would be an uprising. Even after they cleaned it up there would be cries to shut donw the oil fields.
    Trident was fined 2.5 million dollars, the EPA fined FUXXUP 25,000 dollars.





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    Default The problem with fines

    The big problem with almost all regulatory fines is that it is usually cheaper for the company to pay the fine than it is to correct the problem. It then becomes a business decision as the best way as to spend assets. In this case Trident avoided spending many millions for years to minimize the waste for a cost of only $2.5 million.

    My solution would be to make the fine larger than the cost of preventing the violation. If the fine for 40 acres of fish waste or an oil spill from a corroded pipe was greater than the cost of processing the waste or maintaining the pipes then the corrective measures would have been taken long ago.


    Quote Originally Posted by fullbush View Post
    Trident was fined 2.5 million dollars, the EPA fined FUXXUP 25,000 dollars.
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
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    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    The big problem with almost all regulatory fines is that it is usually cheaper for the company to pay the fine than it is to correct the problem. It then becomes a business decision as the best way as to spend assets. In this case Trident avoided spending many millions for years to minimize the waste for a cost of only $2.5 million.

    My solution would be to make the fine larger than the cost of preventing the violation. If the fine for 40 acres of fish waste or an oil spill from a corroded pipe was greater than the cost of processing the waste or maintaining the pipes then the corrective measures would have been taken long ago.
    Absolutely true, but who should be the recipient of the fine? Hopefully not Oceana or into the coffers (pockets) of some bureaucracy. Do they make the offender clean up the site at their expense or does the fine cover it?





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    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    The big problem with almost all regulatory fines is that it is usually cheaper for the company to pay the fine than it is to correct the problem. It then becomes a business decision as the best way as to spend assets. In this case Trident avoided spending many millions for years to minimize the waste for a cost of only $2.5 million.

    My solution would be to make the fine larger than the cost of preventing the violation. If the fine for 40 acres of fish waste or an oil spill from a corroded pipe was greater than the cost of processing the waste or maintaining the pipes then the corrective measures would have been taken long ago.
    Spot on, and applicable to every extractive industry out there. Petroleum, mining, fishing, tourism.... all should be made to bear the true cost of conducting business in an enviromentally responsible manner. But it will never happen until (we the) people get fed up enough to insist on appropriate industry regulation and oversight, and are willing to pay the appropriate price for the products we consume.
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    As a follow up, it looks like Trident agreed to the full fine amount (unusal) and upgrade the handling facilites by 2015.

    Anybody know how the upgrades are going and how long it will take to recover the 40 acre deadzone after hte upgrades are actually installed?
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
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    I would suggest reading the article to find out.........

    Alaska 'dead zones'
    Amanda Coyne | Sep 28, 2011
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    One of the largest seafood processors in Alaska, Trident Seafoods Corp., has agreed to pay a $2.5 million fine to settle 485 violations of the Clean Water Act in Alaska and invest up to $40 million in waste pile remediation. It's the biggest Clean Water Act fine that any processing company has faced in Alaska. The public will have 30 days to comment on the settlement, after which a federal judge must approve it.
    The fine, levied by the EPA and the Justice Department, was for violations beginning to be investigated prior to 2008, when the EPA ceded its authority to monitor such waste to the Alaska State Department of Environmental Conservation. All the violations took place between 2005 and 2010 and involved multiple infractions, including the unauthorized discharge of seafood processing waste from Trident's onshore and offshore processing plants. Trident has 14 such plants in Alaska. The waste includes fish heads, skin and bone which are ground up and then dumped. Only about 35 percent of a salmon ends up on a plate.
    Ed Kowalski, EPA's director of the office of compliance and enforcement in the region, said in a conference call on Wednesday that the agreement is an opportunity for the state and processing industry to work together to protect Alaska waters. “This is the start of a much larger effort,” he said.
    Mike LeVine with Oceana, an environmental group focusing on the world’s oceans, welcomed the settlement. "We have clean air and clean water in Alaska and we're glad to see the EPA doing its job to protect those vital resources," he said
    Trident has received at least six other enforcement actions throughout the years, which apparently didn't result in systemic change in the way the company handles its waste. This time, however, the EPA has "gotten the company's attention," Kowalski said. "We've seen a different Trident at the table this time," he said.

    Sharon Morgan, manager of DEC's waste water discharge authorization program, said that since the state took over Clean Water Act investigation and enforcement, it has not fined a fish processing plant. Trident did not return a call requesting comment.

    Currently, the fish waste from Trident’s plants is pumped onto the seafloor anywhere from 60 to 100 feet from the plant, where it creates what Tara Martich from the EPA described in the conference call as “massive carpets of gelatinous goo." Such carpets suffocate sea life and create "dead zones" on the ocean floor. One such pile in Akutan Harbor in the Aleutians is about 50 acres, roughly 38 football fields, Martich said. It's a pile that has existed for probably 20 years, and is added to every season. At its deepest, it's anywhere from 10 to 20 feet and thins as it spreads.
    As part of the agreement, Trident must reduce the size of that particular massive carpet of goo to no more than 25 acres by Dec. 31, 2017; and not more than 5 acres by Dec. 31, 2022, according to court documents.
    Among other things, Trident has agreed to build a fish meal plant in the Bristol Bay town of Naknek, which the EPA says will be able to handle 30 million pounds of fish waste. The Trident plant there produces about 7 million pounds of waste a year. Kowalski said that the additional space could be used by other fish processors. The plant must be built by 2015. In the meantime, Trident will continue to dump its waste on the ocean floor.
    Trident has also agreed to reduce its fish waste in Akutan, Cordova, St. Paul, and Ketchikan, and will monitor waste in Starrigavan Bay and Sitka.
    All the activities will reduce the discharges by more than 105 million pounds a year, Kowalski said.
    Alaska is the only state where onshore processors dump the waste directly onto the ocean floor, Martich said. Because of its remote location, Alaska processors have been able to skirt regulations that processors in other states must abide by.

    http://www.alaskadispatch.com/articl...ska-dead-zones

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    Default updates..

    The article you referenced is the orginal one. I also found a later one where the fine had been approved but nothing after that.

    I was just curious if Trident was following thru yet on cleaning up their horrible mess of pollution or were delaying as long as they can. I'm betting we haven't seen the end of this story.

    Quote Originally Posted by Akbrownsfan View Post
    I would suggest reading the article to find out.........
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
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    Your questions are answered in that article is why I’m wondering, and suggested to read it….

    You asked if they were cleaning up after themselves, or delaying when it was clearly stated…

    ....“As part of the agreement, Trident must reduce the size of that particular massive carpet of goo to no more than 25 acres by Dec. 31, 2017; and not more than 5 acres by Dec. 31, 2022, according to court documents.
    Among other things, Trident has agreed to build a fish meal plant in the Bristol Bay town of Naknek, which the EPA says will be able to handle 30 million pounds of fish waste. The Trident plant there produces about 7 million pounds of waste a year. Kowalski said that the additional space could be used by other fish processors. The plant must be built by 2015. In the meantime, Trident will continue to dump its waste on the ocean floor.
    Trident has also agreed to reduce its fish waste in Akutan, Cordova, St. Paul, and Ketchikan, and will monitor waste in Starrigavan Bay and Sitka.
    All the activities will reduce the discharges by more than 105 million pounds a year, Kowalski said”.....

    I wonder about your questions as you said you read it. Is it just your "anti-commercial fishing at any chance" coming out?

    Are you asking just to bag on the process or trident or what? I wonder who will check on the pile of goo in 2022, and 2017 (Alaska DEC I guess). I imagine that the pile will just eventually disintegrate over time if they stop adding to it. It’s a 20 old pile, and damage has already been done. (not that I think it should have occurred in the first place.) So if waiting it out and not adding to it is the remediation technique…well it will go away in time. Maybe faster as the 40 million has to be spent on something…….maybe stir up the muck or drag it up or some other method to dissipate it.

    Then the article again……..on the real costs.


    ...One of the largest seafood processors in Alaska, Trident Seafoods Corp., has agreed to pay a $2.5 million fine to settle 485 violations of the Clean Water Act in Alaska and invest up to $40 million in waste pile remediation. It's the biggest Clean Water Act fine that any processing company has faced in Alaska. The public will have 30 days to comment on the settlement, after which a federal judge must approve it....


    I’m just glad the process caught them, and the fine is real. As for if/why/why wasn’t it found earlier……..well have YOU ever been to Akutan? It is remote, and an expensive place to check. I doubt it can occur very often.

    However, the investigation must have been super solid, likely needed to be, and was done over a fairly long period of time….

    …was for violations beginning to be investigated prior to 2008, when the EPA ceded its authority to monitor such waste to the Alaska State Department of Environmental Conservation. All the violations took place between 2005 and 2010 and involved multiple infractions, including the unauthorized discharge of seafood processing waste from Trident's onshore and offshore processing plants. Trident has 14 such plants in Alaska.

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    I did get concerned at this from the article........

    Sharon Morgan, manager of DEC's waste water discharge authorization program, said that since the state took over Clean Water Act investigation and enforcement, it has not fined a fish processing plant. Trident did not return a call requesting comment.


    Is this just another example of Parnell ensuring its business as usual no matter what? While I support the overall state agencies, the management plan process.......I'm very suspicious of Parnell and how he's staffing and running senior state officials. That is just my opinion though so take it for what it's worth.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Akbrownsfan View Post
    Your questions are answered in that article is why I’m wondering, and suggested to read it….
    tvf's question was one of whether Trident had begun to take any action yet, as required, or if they were going to drag their feet until the last minute. I don't see how the article could answer that question. The article, dated a year ago, outlined Tridents violations and corrective action they were supposed to take. tvf's question seems a valid one. Now one year on since it's violations, has Trident begun any remediation efforts, or are they dragging their feet?
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    Well, I think the article clearly outlines it? The timeline is outlined clearly and shouldn't have changed in a year.

    2017, the pile of goo has to be 25 acres

    2022 it has to be 5 acres or less.

    Trident still is allowed to dump until 2015 until the fish meal plant is ready. This plant will be able to handle 30 million pounds of fish waste a year. I would guess then that Akutan being so large produces say 15 million a year (total guess on my part). This maybe 15 million then is allowed to be dumped until 2015. Then I suppose will have to decrease to meet the acre limits that are outlined. Or spend the 40 million in remediation that likely has never been done anywhere in the world. Since only Alaska allows this type of dumping, and Akutan is a huge port for landings I have a feeling there is no established methods of dealing with it. I wouldn't be suprised if the method is simply decreases of wastage, and wave action/natural decay. We'll see.

    Anyway with the timeline outlined, I still do think tvs question is answered as well as yours.....how can they be "dragging their feet" when they don't actually appear to have to do anything until 2015? right or wrong, it (*to me) is clear in the original document.

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Simple question: Has Trident started doing anything?

    Example: Has Trident begun construction on the fish meal plant?

    Anything?
    ...he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods & errors. ~Thomas Jefferson
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    Default EPA Consent Decree..

    More information on Trident's fine and past history. This story speaks for itself; you gotta love these guys. Truly a great company helping Alaskans!


    The EPA consent decree: http://epa.gov/compliance/resources/...tseafoods.html

    From the decree:

    "Between 2005 and 2009, Trident violated the Clean Water Act (CWA) 480 times at fifteen of the company’s onshore and offshore facilities. Specifically, Trident discharged pollutants, including seafood processing waste, without an NPDES permit or in violation of its NPDES permit terms and effluent limits. Trident also failed to submit timely, accurate, and complete annual reports; conduct required monitoring; and implement best management practice plans." (emphasis mine)


    and the Sit News: http://www.sitnews.us/1011News/10151...leanwater.html

    "The EPA complaint, also filed as part of this legal action, alleges that Trident had more than 480 CWA violations at 14 of its on-shore and off-shore Alaskan seafood processing facilities. The alleged violations include discharging without a necessary permit, exceeding discharge limits, failing to comply with permit restrictions on discharge locations (including discharges into at least two National Wildlife Refuges), creating oxygen-depleting “zones of deposit” or underwater piles of fish processing waste occupying more than the allowed one acre of seafloor. The company also allegedly failed to conduct required monitoring and implement required best management practices.

    Over the past decade, Trident has been a party to multiple administrative enforcement agreements and judicial consent decrees resolving similar violations at many of the same facilities."
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    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    More information on Trident's fine and past history. This story speaks for itself; you gotta love these guys. Truly a great company helping Alaskans!
    That pales in comparison to the oil industry. But I suppose you gotta love those guys too...truly great companies helping Alaskans.

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    Default comparison?

    How many times was one oil company fined between 2005 and 2009? And remember the oil industry operates a much more complex operation year round- not just for a few months.

    Also - the oil companies have spent billions cleaning up the spills they had- Trident isn't cleaning up the 40-50 acre dead sone they created in one spot alone - just waiting and hoping it goes away in time.

    When it comes to helping Alaskans - we had all just better hope and pray the oil companies don't go away. The comm fish industry totally pales in comparison in benefits to ALL Alaskans any way you want to compare



    Quote Originally Posted by Sockeye2em View Post
    That pales in comparison to the oil industry. But I suppose you gotta love those guys too...truly great companies helping Alaskans.
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
    ".. ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" JFK

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