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US watchdog reaches deal with StarKist American Samoa

StarKist employees entering the canning plant in American Samoa.
Source: RNZI

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — The US Environmental Protection Agency has reached a settlement with fish canner StarKist to resolve alleged violations of the federal Clean Air Act at its facility in American Samoa.

StarKist is leasing the Samoa Tuna Processors facility to refrigerate tuna.

Ensuring facilities reduced the risk from hazardous substances was critical, EPA's Pacific Southwest administrator Mike Stoker said.

An 2016 EPA inspection found Starkist violated the Clean Air Act's General Duty Clause by failing to safely manage anhydrous ammonia, a toxic chemical highly corrosive to skin, eyes and lungs.

At the time of the inspections, conditions revealed the ammonia refrigeration system was not designed to meet safety standards.

The settlement requires Starkist to take action to make the facility safe and prevent releases of anhydrous ammonia.

Details in Samoa News next week.