by Mindy Aguon
Guam - Mobil Oil Guam and Mobil Oil Mariana Islands have entered into a settlement with the Justice Department and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The two subsidiaries of Exxon Mobil Corporation have agreed to pay $2.4 million for air pollution violations.
According to a release from the U.S. EPA, the two companies have illegally discharged hundreds of tons of volatile organic compounds into the air each year from their bulk gasoline terminals on Cabras Island and in Saipan. A complaint and settlement were filed in the district court stating that Mobil Oil failed to install vapor pollution controls on 13 storage tanks and all of their loading racks at gasoline storage facilities on the islands–posing a hazardous environment for those in the area. EPA Pacific Southwest regional administrator, Jared Blumenfeld, stated, "This enforcement action should serve as a warning to other large companies that they need to ensure that each part of their operations complies with the law – even facilities that are more than 7,000 miles from their headquarters."
The two subsidiaries will spend an estimated $15 million to come into compliance with the Clean Air Act and install air pollution controls and monitors.