U.S. EPA orders Guam Shipyard to control pollution

Guam Shipyard (PNC file photo)

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has ordered Guam Shipyard to obtain a stormwater discharge permit and to achieve compliance with the Clean Water Act for discharges of pollutants into Apra Harbor.

EPA Pacific Southwest Regional Administrator Mike Stoker said ship repair facilities must have stormwater pollution controls to protect coastal ecosystems and this latest EPA order will prevent pollution from reaching Apra Harbor.

Guam Shipyard operates a ship repair facility on Cabras Island in Piti. It has operated industrial activities, including boat repair, sandblasting, high pressure washing, painting and material storage since January 2016.

EPA inspected the facility on September 2018 and found multiple violations of the Clean Water Act. EPA concluded the facility has been discharging pollutants in stormwater and process wastewater associated with industrial activity without Clean Water Act permit authorization.

According to EPA, inspectors also observed that the facility failed to control blasting grit, paint particles and debris, which discharged directly into Apra Harbor; failed to have adequate secondary containment for oils; did not have spill response equipment available; and had a large accumulation of waste materials throughout the site.

EPA is now requiring the facility to:

* Obtain permit authorization;
* Develop a Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan to control pollutants;
* Install adequate controls to contain sandblast and abrasive blast materials;
* Capture non-stormwater discharges to prevent their entry into Apra Harbor; and
* Ensure spill response equipment available on site.


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Jolene Toves
Jolene joined the PNC team in 2017, as a producer, co-anchor and investigative reporter covering law enforcement, courts and crimes. Notable coverage includes the Ehlert case, the Mark Torre Jr. trial, the Allan Agababa trial, exclusive pieces on the Life of a Drug Dealer/Addict, and Life behind bars...the story of Honofre Chargualaf and Kevin Cruz. In 2019, she was promoted to Assistant News Director and Lead Anchor. From 2015 to 2017 she served as Public Relations and Promotions Manager, for the Hotel Nikko Guam handling local radio and advertorial promotions, as well as produced and directed tv commercials for the hotel. Prior to this she worked with KUAM for three years as a reporter and segment host. She began her journalism career in 2012, working with Glimpses of Guam contributing to the Guam Business Magazine, R&R magazine, MDM magazine and the Marianas Business Journal.