Union Pacific Railroad is paying out $228,000 in civil penalties and related costs to settle environmental complaints linked to its 2005 removal of some railroad-owned huts.
The case had been moving toward a settlement for months, but UP said in a new filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that a consent decree making it official was entered March 4 by the U.S. District Court for the District of Utah.
The railroad company said it transferred some engineering signal huts to a Salt Lake City recycler in September 2005. Afterward, the Environmental Protection Agency, along with the U.S. attorney for the Utah district and Utah’s attorney general, contended that UP “failed to provide pre-demolition notification” required by national emissions standards for hazardous air pollutants before taking the huts off their foundations.
The railroad, though, maintains that the notice requirements don’t apply to removing those huts, so the two sides negotiated a settlement in which UP pays “without admitting liability.”
UP said it agreed to pay civil penalties of $150,000 to Utah’s Department of Environmental Quality and $50,000 to the U.S. Treasury to resolve their claims. It will also pay the Utah attorney general’s office $28,202 to cover its investigative costs.
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