Tesla penalized for violating hazardous waste law at California factory

Tesla has agreed with the Environmental Protection Agency on hazardous waste violations found at factories in Fremont, California. Tesla has agreed to pay a $ 31,000 fine and will purchase $ 55,000 worth of emergency response equipment for the Fremont Fire Station as part of the settlement.

EPA has announced that Tesla's Fremont plant has conducted an "unannounced inspection" with the Toxic Substances Control Bureau (DTSC) and BayAir Quality Control District (BAAQMD) in 2017. The Environmental Protection and Restoration Act (RCRA) is a set of regulations granting the authority to control hazardous waste from the cradle to the grave as a cradle built in 1976, according to EPA 's website.

Tesla did not comply with the RCRA regulations in three ways under the EPA. Tesla failed to comply with air emission standards for equipment leaks, failed to comply with management requirements for hazardous waste generators, and failed to make appropriate hazardous waste decisions for certain solid waste generated at the facility. The EPA did not specifically address how Tesla did not comply with the provisions of each of these competencies. Fremont Fire Station, DTSC and BAAQMD did not respond immediately to the request for comment.

Tesla told The Verge that he solved all the problems in the test via e-mail. "Within 16 months of our EPA visit, Tesla has made great progress in environmental programs and ongoing compliance with Laurie Shelby, vice president of environmental, health and safety," the company spokesperson said. "We are pleased to be working with the EPA 9 area and we are proud that Fremont City will benefit from the agreed settlement."

It is not the first time Tesla has been fined by the EPA. The company had to pay a fine of $ 275,000 as part of the 2010 settlement after not obtaining adequate certification for the first Tesla Roadster. Tesla charged BAAQMD $ 139,500 in 2018 due to pollution from the Fremont plant.

Tesla also fought other government agencies. The California Department of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal-OSHA) imposed a fine of $ 71,000 in 2013 after three employees were burned with molten aluminum. Cal-OSHA also imposed a $ 29,365 fine for Tesla earlier this year on safety hazards found in a company-built outdoor tent in 2018 when Model 3 is assembled, according to a workplace safety agency.

Tesla has repeatedly been criticized for safety practices in the workplace. The Investigative Reporting Center has published several investigative reports documenting loose safety standards and claims of under-reported injuries. Four anonymous employees told Bloomberg that in 2018 (for the most important months of Model 3 production) managers were instructed to go through the sewer at the factory floor. In each case, Tesla said she did not know the claim or denied it altogether.

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