Alameda County District Attorney's Office
Nancy E. O'Malley, District Attorney

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DA O’Malley Announces $11.5 Million Settlement with Phillips 66 & ConocoPhillips

Alameda County District Attorney Nancy E. O’Malley Announces $11.5 Million Settlement with Phillips 66 and ConocoPhillips for Underground Gas Tank Violations

Oakland, CA -- Alameda County District Attorney Nancy E. O’Malley today announced an $11.5 million settlement with Phillips 66 and ConocoPhillips. The settlement resolves law enforcement allegations that the companies violated state laws governing the proper operation and maintenance of underground storage tanks used to store gasoline at retail gas stations. The companies failed to comply with hazardous materials and hazardous waste laws at over 560 gasoline stations owned or operated by the companies in the state of California.

“My office is committed to protecting the environment and the public from potential exposure to hazardous materials,” says District Attorney O’Malley. “When corporations place our valuable water resources in jeopardy by failing to comply with environmental laws and regulations, they must be held accountable. The settlement today achieves this important goal.”

The Alameda County District Attorney’s office was joined in this enforcement action by Attorney General Kamala D. Harris, and the District Attorneys of El Dorado County, Merced County, Nevada County, Placer County, San Bernardino County, and Stanislaus County.

“Phillips 66 and ConocoPhillips failed to adequately monitor hazardous materials in large gasoline holding tanks, which endangered nearby water supplies. This settlement holds Phillips 66 and ConocoPhillips accountable for this dangerous negligence and will ensure future compliance with environmental laws,” Attorney General Harris said.

The Complaint, filed in January of 2013, alleges that since 2006 Phillips 66 and ConocoPhillips have violated environmental laws with respect to underground storage tanks by failing to properly maintain leak detection devices, test secondary containment systems, conduct monthly inspections, train employees in proper protocol, and maintain operational alarm systems, among other violations.

A statewide investigation found violations of hazardous materials and hazardous waste laws and regulations at gas stations in 34 counties across the state. While the two companies have sold nearly all of their interests in the underground storage tank sites in California, the settlement still prohibits the companies from violating statutes, regulations, and permit requirements related to underground gas storage tanks, hazardous waste, and hazardous materials at any sites they currently own, or any that they may acquire in the future in the California.

The parties agreed to resolve the matter, and today Alameda County Superior Court Judge George C. Hernandez, Jr. approved of the settlement.

Contact:
ADA Teresa Drenick // Teresa.Drenick@acgov.org // (510) 272-6280
Rebecca Richardson // Rebecca.Richardson2@acgov.org // (510) 272-6213

Posted on May 7, 2015