(CNSNews.com) – The Environmental Protection Agency collected $252 million in civil and criminal penalties in fiscal year 2012 – an all-time record amount, and more than twice the $168 million assessed in fiscal 2011, according to the agency’s annual enforcement results.
The agency touted the fiscal 2012 fines and other enforcement actions in a Dec. 17 news release, calling them the result of “vigorous enforcement.”
“Enforcement plays a vital role in protecting communities from harmful pollution,” said Cynthia Giles, assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance.
“We are using vigorous enforcement, as well as innovations in monitoring and transparency, to reduce pollution violations, protect and empower communities and focus on the environmental problems that matter most,” she said.
The EPA said the $252 million in penalties was “assessed to deter pollution.” And it says 6.6 billion pounds of pollution and hazardous waste were “reduced, eliminated, properly disposed of or treated” as a result of its enforcement actions.
In addition to the fines, the EPA directed various environmental offenders to spend $44 million on remedial projects, such as installing pollution controls. That’s up from an estimated $25 million in supplemental environmental projects in fiscal 2011.