U.S. EPA, American Samoa reach revised settlement with StarkistStaff Writer | December 27, 2017
The U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have reached a revised $6.5 million settlement with StarKist Co. and its subsidiary, Starkist Samoa Co., to resolve federal environmental violations at their tuna processing facility in American Samoa.
Tuna processing facility Federal environmental violations
The American Samoa government has also been added as a co-plaintiff in the revised action, formalizing its role as a partner in the implementation of the settlement. Under the agreement, Starkist will pay $2.6 million to American Samoa and $3.9 million to the United States.
As specified in the original consent decree, the company will also provide $88,000 in emergency equipment to American Samoa for responses to chemical releases.
The additional violations included unauthorized stormwater discharges to Pago Pago Harbor from Starkist’s stormwater system. The revised consent decree requires Starkist to obtain authorization for its stormwater discharges and take steps to reduce and eliminate discharges to the harbor.
After full implementation of the wastewater treatment system upgrades, the facility’s annual discharge of pollutants into Pago Pago Harbor, including total nitrogen, phosphorus, oil and grease, and total suspended solids, will be reduced by at least 85 percent – more than 13 million pounds.
Starkist Samoa Co. owns and operates the tuna processing facility, located on Route 1 on the Island of Tutuila in American Samoa. Starkist Samoa Co. is a subsidiary of StarKist Co. which is owned by Korean company Dongwon Industries.
StarKist Co. is the world’s largest supplier of canned tuna. Its American Samoa facility processes and cans tuna for human consumption and processes fish byproducts into fishmeal and fish oil. ■