Momentive to pay $2.3M for Waterford environmental violations

Momentive Performance Materials' Waterford factory complex is shown in the aerial photo provided by the company.
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Momentive Performance Materials' Waterford factory complex is shown in the aerial photo provided by the company.

WATERFORD — Momentive Performance Materials and the state have agreed on a $2.3 million settlement for 14 years worth of environmental violations by the chemical manufacturer.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation announced the resolution Tuesday, and said more than half the money will go directly to the Waterford and Halfmoon communities.

Momentive in a prepared statement said some of the instances of noncompliance were self-reported, all have been resolved, and none had significant impact on health, safety or the environment.

DEC reported that the consent order resolves all violations of air, water and hazardous waste regulations at the complex since 2007.

Momentive will pay a $1 million penalty to the state, will provide $1 million for an environmental benefit project for Waterford and Halfmoon, and will forgive $300,000 in tax repayments owed by the Waterford-Halfmoon Union Free School District — the last piece of a $3.5 million refund resulting from a 2020 assessment reduction.

The order requires Momentive to perform additional corrective actions on site and allows it to continue with its planned transition from a manufacturer of silicones as a bulk commodity to a specialty manufacturer supplying computer chip manufacturers.

The DEC consent order indicates that Momentive’s transition to specialty silicones is expected to reduce the environmental impact of its operations, including through the decommissioning of its two on-site chemical incinerators, elimination of two long-term hazardous waste storage areas, and reduced permitted discharges into the Hudson River.

The facility on Routes 4 and 32 was formerly GE Silicones; General Electric sold its Silicones business in 2006 and it was renamed MPM Silicones LLC.

DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos, who signed the consent order Tuesday, said in a news release:

“I applaud the work of our legal and regulatory experts in addressing Momentive Performance Materials’ past violations and crafting this settlement to help ensure this facility remains in compliance with New York’s hazardous waste, air, and water protection measures. DEC also looks forward to working with the Waterford and Halfmoon communities to implement this million-dollar Environmental Benefit Project as we continue to provide rigorous oversight of Momentive’s operations.”

In a Momentive Performance Materials news release, Senior Vice President Craig Branchfield said:

“We appreciate the constructive dialogue we had with the Department in resolving these past issues and look forward to our continued efforts to transform the Waterford facility into a global center focusing on advanced silicone technologies. The company is committed to continuing to work with the NYSDEC on matters related to environmental permitting.”

Categories: Business, News, Saratoga County

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