CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Bayer CropScience has agreed to pay nearly $460,000 to resolve a variety of chemical storage and air pollution violations cited by state inspectors at its Institute plant over the last three years, company and government officials said.
Bayer and the state Department of Environmental Protection quietly worked out deals on chemical tank violations last month and finalized two separate air pollution settlements earlier this week, according to documents made public Wednesday.
The largest of the settlements -- nearly $337,000 -- involved citations in which DEP inspectors alleged Bayer had mismanaged safety systems on the underground tank where Bayer stores thousands of pounds of deadly methyl isocyanate, or MIC.
DEP inspectors had cited Bayer after discovering that uncertified contractors had performed testing on the tank and that the tests showed a corrosion control system wasn't working properly.
The problems were cited in September 2009, and DEP officials worked out a settlement with Bayer during private meetings held in March and July of this year, according to agency records.
In the settlement document made public Wednesday, DEP officials said they believed "based on the information provided by Bayer, there were other redundant control measures not required" by law in place and that Bayer "believes that the tank was operating safely without danger to the plant and the community."
Bayer agreed as part of the deal to conduct a detailed review of all of the Institute plant's tanks to insure their safety and compliance with state and federal rules.