DEQ Press Releases

Driscoll, Paul

DEQ, Columbia Falls Aluminum Company and Calbag Resources Agree to Address Potential Montana Hazardous Waste Act Violations

HELENA – The Montana Department of Environmental Quality announced that Columbia Falls Aluminum Company and Calbag Resources LLC, the demolition contractors, have agreed to address potential violations of the Montana Hazardous Waste Act at the aluminum reduction facility’s Pot Room Building in Columbia Falls.

The facility contains 451 aluminum reduction cells which contain K088, a listed hazardous waste derived from spent pot liners. DEQ, CFAC, and Calbag entered into an Administrative Order on Consent to address the need for a hazardous waste management permit to store K088 on-site for more than 90 days, and to address the potential that CFAC and/or Calbag may violate hazardous waste accumulation and storage time limits.

This Consent Order does not address the demolition and disposal of any other building, structure, or equipment associated with aluminum processing or reduction at the facility. Nor does the Consent Order address the release of Superfund hazardous substances at the site.  The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will work in close consultation with DEQ through a separate process to ensure a protective cleanup of the site under the federal Superfund program. EPA has proposed the site to the National Priorities List and the state of Montana supports this listing of CFAC. CFAC and Calbag are not required to obtain a Permit for the storage of hazardous waste from the Pot Room Building for more than 90 days provided they comply with the provisions of the Consent Order.

CFAC and Calbag will submit a plan for the proper removal of the K088 and other regulated hazardous wastes from the Pot Room Building and for the proper transport and off-site disposal of the wastes at a permitted disposal facility. Once the process of removing K088 begins, CFAC and Calbag will have 90 days to process, store, and transport the waste from that individual site to a permitted hazardous waste disposal facility.

All K088, and any other listed or characteristic hazardous waste, will be removed from the Pot Room Building within two years from the date DEQ approves the plan. Additionally, the DEQ Asbestos Control Program has been providing direct compliance assistance and regulatory permitting for demolition of the facility.

For questions concerning the Montana Hazardous Waste Act and laws, please contact the DEQ Waste and Underground Storage Tank Bureau at (406) 444-5300 or visit DEQ’s website at: 

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