Tennessee Clean Water Network
625 Market St.
Knoxville, TN 37902
PO BOX 1521
Knoxville, TN 37902
March 19, 2012
For Immediate Release
Contact: Renée Victoria Hoyos, 865.522.7007 x100 or 865.607.6618
Brownsville, TN. The Tennessee Clean Water Network (“TCWN”) filed a 60-day notice of intent to sue Teknor Apex Tennessee Company Haywood Plant (Teknor Apex) for alleged violations of the Clean Water Act on March 16, 2012.
Teknor Apex is a privately held company that uses bis-(ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) in the production of vinyl products such as garden hoses. Phthalates are potentially potent endocrine disrupting chemicals. Teknor Apex has discharged as much as 4500% of the allowable limits for phthalates to Little Nixon Creek in the Forked Deer – South Fork Watershed. Teknor Apex’s permit imposes limits on total suspended solids, oil and grease, biological oxygen demand, and phthalate esters, all of which the company routinely violates. In total, Teknor Apex has violated its permit at least 184 times in the past 5 years, roughly three times per month.
“This is one of the worst examples of corporate irresponsibility we have seen,” explained TCWN Executive Director Renée Hoyos. “Teknor Apex seems very proud of its environmental reputation, but quite frankly they have a lousy record of environmental compliance. It will be a pleasure to fix this problem.”
According to its website, “Teknor Apex Company prides itself on its dedication and commitment to environmentally friendly and sustainable solutions.”
“I guess one solution is to illegally dump their waste in the creek.” Mused Ms. Hoyos. “TDEC’s woeful enforcement program has allowed them to get away with permit violations for years.”
TCWN’s review of files at the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (“TDEC”) found that TDEC issued a Director’s Order in 2005, followed up with two notices of violation, which are largely fix-it tickets, in July 2008 and March 2011. TDEC did a compliance inspection in 2006 finding “satisfactory ratings for all areas except for operating and maintenance and permit compliance.” TCWN does not consider this robust enforcement.
For the complete Notice Letter, click here.