EPA fines Monterey Park firm
The United States Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA) issued an order seeking penalties up to $37,500
per day to Monterey Park, California-based ZKW Trading for failing
to properly manage electronic waste that it attempted to export
to Hong Kong.
EPA issued the penalty order after ZKW failed to comply with
a September 2009 order requiring ZKW to remove its cargo from
the Port of Long Beach and to submit a plan for management of
electronic waste that ZKW had shipped to Hong Kong without providing
required notice. The waste was part of a shipment of approximately
31,993 pounds of cathode ray tubes that had been rejected in
Hong Kong and returned to the Port of Long Beach. ZKW failed
to provide appropriate notice to EPA or to the receiving country
as required by federal law. After receiving the earlier order,
ZKW informed EPA that it would not comply with the order.
“EPA requires all exporters of e-waste for recycling to provide
notification,” said Amy Miller, who leads Resource Conservation
and Recovery Act enforcement in EPA’s Pacific Southwest region.
“Companies that fail to comply will face significant penalties.”
Commonly known as CRTs, cathode ray tubes are the video display
components of televisions and computer monitors. The glass in
these units typically contains enough lead to require managing
it as hazardous waste when they are discarded or recycled.
In June 2009, ZKW Trading reportedly consigned 38 pallets of
cathode ray tubes – listing the cargo as plastic scrap – for
shipment to Hong Kong, where it was rejected by Hong Kong customs
The order gave ZKW Trading 30 days to remove the cargo, and 45
days to submit a plan to the EPA detailing how it will reuse,
recycle, or discard the CRTs. ZKW Trading’s failure to comply
subjects it to fines of up to $37,500 per day of noncompliance.