46 violation notices issued in 2016 by EQPB, over $148,000 in fines collected
PPUC sued for failure to provide clean water
By: L.N. Reklai
January 2, 2016 (Koror, Palau) Forty-six (46) Notice of Violations (NOV) were issued by Environmental Quality Protection Board against persons and companies that violated EQPB regulations.
“Notice of Violations serve to inform the respondent that they have violated a particular part of the EQPB regulations, how much the initial fine is, and a deadline to request a hearing with the EQPB in which they can plead their case,” stated Roxanne Blesam, Executive Officer of EQPB. [restrict]
Of the 46 violations, 20 are still pending, 21 have paid fine, 3 were rescinded and 2 waived.
A total of $148,150 in fines were collected from the 21 who were fined. This money goes to “Mitigation Trust Fund that is reserved for use in litigating environmental damages and disasters” according EQPB EO Blesam.
EQPB sued one violator, Palau Public Utilities Corporation in a civil suit No. 16-011 for repeatedly failing to provide people of Babeldaob with drinking water that meets the water quality standards in terms of chlorine, turbidity, and total Coliform Bacteria and E.Coli levels set by EQPB Public Water Supply Systems Regulations.
The trial was held on October 11-13 and is now awaiting court decision.
“These regulations function as principles and guidelines in ensuring that the EQPB mandate – safeguarding the delicate balance between development and environmental protection, is upheld,” asserted EQPB EO Roxanne Blesam. [/restrict]