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Foundries alerted to new environmental regulations.

Gary Mosher, chief of environmental affairs for the American Foundrymen's Society, advised foundry managers to accept the new environmental regulations of their industry as the inevitable consequence of the government's push into their industry in the name of pollution control. He also cautioned them to carefully prepare and scrupulously maintain their own compliance paper trail' for use in defense of their waste control and disposal practices-should the need arise.

Addressing nearly 300 men and women attending the 4th Annual AFS Environmental Conference (Milwaukee, September 1991), Mosher told the gathering to be prepared to live with the now notorious Section 313 of the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-know Act of 1986, also known as Title Ill of the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA).

"This Act impacts foundries proas the IRS of chemicals, giving to the agency the rights to enter, regulate, subpoena records, shut down, fine or bring suit against those it deems in violation of its mandate to control chemical pollution. Believe what you read in the environmental regulations, then practice what you read. Ignorance of SARA is no protection for foundries and their managers,' he warned.

R. Conner Warren, executive vice president of Citation Corporation, AFS president and conference keynoter, reported that U.S. industry is already spending $32 billion to clean its air emissions and $25 billion to clean up its water discharge. He added that reaching the Clean Air Act's goal of reducing air pollution by 90% by the year 2000 will cost American industry an additional $52 billion and 600,000 jobs. He predicted that, by 1996,40% of the cost of a new foundry will be tagged for environmental control equipment.

Warren asserted that more aggressive EPA and OSHA actions, coupled with steeply increased fines and criminal prosecutions of company officers for environmental infractions, are even affecting traditional lender relations. The courts have begun holding banks liable for pollution problems of their failed creditor companies, making bankers wary of lending money to foundries, especially for acquisitions.

Linda Glass, head of EPA'S Region V, listed four legislative mandates to EPA resulting from the Pollution Prevention Act of 1990:

* establish standard methods of measurement

for (pollution) source reduction

(determine what constitutes

pollution reduction, how it is calculated

and what benchmarks for claiming

reduction are acceptable);

* improve public access to data

collected(make more pollution control

information available to the government

and for eay and inexpen - sive public access);

* facilitate adoption of

source reduction by

business (through government

action, determine

acceptable levels

of pollution control by

substitution or restricted

use of hazardous

raw materials);

* report to Congress on

barriers to source reduction

(look to government

action to alter

pollution prevention or

reduction plans and

systems that are ineffective

or unrealistic).

What's Coming

A list of pending environmental legislation bills currently working their way through Congress was covered by Walter Kiplinger, head of the AFS Washington, D.C. office. He cited 36 pieces of proposed legislation and clarifications, plus 25 OSHA proposed and expected rules that are in the congressional pipeline, many due for action this year. Many will impact foundries.

According to Louis Rundino, a Chicago environmental lawyer, what is new in criminal penalty provisions in environmental statutes is that legisiaare now showing a keen interest in enhancing and applying statutory penalty provisions.

In addition to the most commonly cited criminal environmental provisions, federal prosecutors have a host of more general statutes to use in prosecuting environmental offenses, the most common being conspiracy, false statements, mail or wire fraud, obstruction of justice, and racketeering. Most states have environmental criminal provisions in their statutes. in fact, he said, the bulk of criminal enforcement has been on the state level, and the likelihood of prosecution for environmental offenses is rapidly increasing under broader interpretations of the various affected statutes. The chances of prison and/or fines for convicted foundry executives is very real.

Redmond Clark, president of TDJ Group said that, because foundries are large generators of wastes, they are especially vulnerable to any regulatory changes increasing waste management costs. He concluded that the next three years will be critical for the industry as the EPA and the various states form a regulatory structure that may add to residual cost increases. As states expand their hazardous and special waste universes to include formerly unregulated foundry wastes, the industry must become more aggressive in seeking to slow or modify the rush to regulate.

Note: The entire Conference proceedings were recorded and will be available from AFS after the first of the year. Copies of proposed legislation and rules changes may be obtained by contacting the AFS Washington office.
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No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1991, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:AFS environmental conference
Author:Bex, Tom
Publication:Modern Casting
Date:Oct 1, 1991
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