Weitsman Fined $400,000 in Owego Shredder Air Pollution Case
Adam Weitsman says steps are being taken to reduce air emissions from his large Owego metal shredding facility.
Upstate Shredding and Weitsman Shredding were named in an Environmental Protection Agency complaint.
The EPA had alleged that "reasonably available control technology" had not been installed to reduce the release of volatile organic compounds into the air.
The compounds can cause smog and could potentially result in health problems.
Weitsman said federal emission guidelines were tightened for the industry. He said no machine existed that could do what the EPA wanted. He noted the agency had not conducted any emission tests at his facility in Tioga County.
Weitsman signed a consent decree with the EPA agreeing to pay a civil penalty of $400,000. He also has agreed to install and operate an enclosure and capture system to reduce air pollution from the shredder.
Weitsman was facing potentially millions of dollars in fines based on the EPA lawsuit. The deal with the agency states Upstate Shredding will fully comply with the agreement by March 31, 2026.
Weitsman told WNBF News he expects it will cost about $7 million to design and install the necessary equipment at the Owego site.
The Sierra Club filed a separate lawsuit in May 2021 alleging Weitsman scrap metal facilities had caused stormwater pollution.
Weitsman said negotiations are underway in connection with that legal action. He said he expects that matter will be settled soon.
LISTEN: Adam Weitsman discussed pollution control efforts at his scrap metal plants during a live interview on WNBF Radio on July 25, 2023.