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The Nebraska Master Naturalist Program is a public and private partnership supported by the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, Nebraska Environmental Trust, Nebraska Game and Parks Commission and Nebraska Master Naturalist Foundation. Our program recruits, trains, manages, and provides resources for our Naturalist members participating in interpretation and outreach, resource management, citizen science, and outdoor skills and recreation in Nebraska.

Photo by Adrian Olivera

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News & Notes

CHICAGO (July 12, 2024) – On Monday, July 15, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will begin a 30-day public comment period on proposed revisions to the Velsicol Chemical Superfund site cleanup plan.  Revisions include repairing the existing slurry wall around the former plant site and removing the need to extend a collection system around monitoring well 19.  

On Wednesday, July 31, EPA will host a public meeting and accept comments on the proposed revisions to the cleanup plan at the community room in City Hall, 300 N. Mill St., St. Louis, Michigan. There will be a formal presentation about the modification to the cleanup plan, also known as an explanation of significant differences, followed by a question-and-answer period. At the end, EPA will accept formal comments from the public. To view the proposed modifications to the cleanup plan before the meeting, please visit EPA’s website 

To submit a comment, send by mail to Diane Russell, community involvement coordinator, U.S. EPA Region 5, 1300 Bluff St., Suite 105, Flint, MI 48504; attend the public meeting on July 31 to provide an oral comment; or go to EPA’s Velsicol website and click the “Public Comment Form” and fill out a comment. Comments must be received before midnight on August 13.  

For more information about the Velsicol Chemical Superfund site, visit EPA’s website.    

Today, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced an order issued to the city of Marietta, Ohio, to resolve alleged violations of the Clean Water Act at the city’s wastewater treatment works, located at 440 East Eighth Street.

Pollutants including fecal coliform and E. coli were discharged in amounts that exceed permit limits into the Ohio River. On multiple occasions, untreated sewage was discharged to the Ohio River, the Muskingum River and a tributary to the Muskingum River. Under the order, the city is required to submit a plan to EPA for plant upgrades and collection system improvements to address the chronic permit effluent exceedances, treatment bypasses, and sanitary sewer overflows, along with other operations, maintenance, reporting, and monitoring violations discovered during a July 2023 inspection.

The city contains areas with environmental justice concerns. Environmental justice is the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income with respect to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies.

To learn more about the Clean Water Act, visit the EPA website.

To learn more about EPA’s enforcement process, visit its website.

SAN FRANCISCO – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today announced a proposed settlement with OMG Partners of Turlock, Calif. to resolve claims of Clean Water Act violations after one of the company’s tanker trucks overturned and a fuel product spilled into the roadway, Laguna Creek, Coyote Creek, and the Don Edwards National Wildlife Refuge. The fuel reached the San Francisco Bay. The proposed settlement requires OMG Partners to pay a civil penalty of $140,000.

“Spilled fuel can cause severe harm to our waters, wildlife and ecosystems, so it’s imperative that it be transported in a safe manner,” said EPA Pacific Southwest Regional Administrator Martha Guzman. “With this proposed settlement, EPA is showing our commitment to holding accountable entities that pollute waterways in the San Francisco Bay watershed.”

On Dec. 24, 2021, one of OMG Partners’ trucks was transporting 8,500 gallons of unleaded gasoline when it overturned in Fremont, Calif., releasing 7,900 gallons of gasoline, some of which flowed to Laguna Creek and subsequently into the San Francisco Bay. At the direction of EPA and California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Office of Spill Prevention and Response (OSPR), OMG Partners contractors placed booming in four locations: the main storm drain outfall, Laguna Creek, Agua Caliente, and Coyote Creek.

In the settlement, EPA alleges that OMG Partners’ tanker truck released unleaded gasoline in such quantities that may be harmful.

Additional Information:

For more information visit EPA’s public notice webpage.

For more information on reporting possible violations of environmental laws and regulations visit EPA’s enforcement reporting website.

Learn about EPA’s Pacific Southwest Region. Connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, and X

Photo by Allison Dush
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