Saturday, February 25, 2006

Enviro outlaws, big and small

Recently, in Alvin, former hometown of fireball pitcher Nolan Ryan, state environmental authorities handled two cases.

One was against the Wee Mart, a little rundown convenience store.

The other was against Equistar Chemicals, L.P., a wholly owned subsidiary of Lyondell Chemical Co., which is traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

At the Wee Mart, enviro regulators cited the owner, Ralph Kurjee, for failing to collect "at least five routine samples after a total coliform-positive sample" was discovered, failing to collect "routine" bacteriological samples, failing to collect "no fewer than four repeat samples within 24 hours" of a positive result, and finally, failing to prevent the "exceedence" of the "nonacute" (emphasis added) maximum contaminent level for total coliform bacteria

These are, indeed, very serious charges if bacteria-laden water has ever given you the Hershey squirts.

The Wee Mart was penalized $1,650.

Meanwhile, Equistar Chemicals, L.P., was called on the carpet for failing to prevent the transportation of waste to an "unauthorized" facility and failing to provide the "proper manifest" for the transportation of "Class 1 waste."

Equistar was penalized $6,480.

Equistar makes plastics. Class 1 waste is the most serious kind, but we don't know exactly what kinda waste was involved.

The Equistar penalty was nearly 4 times the amount of the Wee Mart penalty.

Let's see ... Wee Mart, ramshackle convenience store, past contributor to the Liverpool Volunteer Fire Department, located in the middle of nowhere, probably not real strong in the record-keeping department VERSUS Equistar, NY stock exchange, maker of plastics, subsidiary of Lyondell, polluter of Mother Earth, accountants and laywers out the wazoo ...

By jove, I think the Wee Mart feels sufficiently chastised, but I'm not so sure about Equistar.

[texas register]


cacafuego95 said...

That's justice? Hot Diggety!

JD Allen said...

Well, if the Wee Mart was caught with a high fecal coliform (FC) count, doesn't it seem like they would change the name to Wee-Wee Mart?

I doubt the Equistar waste fine was for FC count problems, probably something more like TOC (Total Organic Carbon).

High FC is just an indicator that at some point the tested material came into contact with do-do, not Wee-Wee. Meaning it could easily be contaminated with hepatitis and Lord knows what-all.

Probably al Queda did it. said...

Now, let's us see, $1,650 was probably Wee Mart's entire net profit for the week.

$6,480 was probably what Equistar will waste on bad copies and executive family pics for the quarter from the $250,000 color copier on the third floor.

I think I know another place where we could find a high fecal coliform count.