LIBERIA: EPA Quarantines Expired Chemicals Amid Public Health Threats

The Environmental Protection Agency of Liberia (EPA) on Monday, May 17, 2021 quarantined a consignment of expired assorted chemical at RM Group on GSA Road in Paynesville, outside Monrovia.

RM Group is a detergent company.

The expired chemicals were quarantined by technicians of the EPA backed by officers of the Liberia National Police assigned at Zone 5 Police station amidst public health threats.

In an attempt to conceal the assorted expired chemicals, RM Group denied technicians access to its premises, according to a release from EPA.

The technicians were however given access into the company’s premises following EPA Chief Executive Officer, Prof. Wilson K. Tarpeh and the police’s interventions.

The EPA said during assessment and inventory, it was established that the company was operating on an expired permit in blatant disregard to the Environmental Protection and Management Law (EPML) of Liberia.

It was also established that RM Group was discharging without an effluent discharge license as required by law.

“RM Group never had a chemical registration and an importation license to import chemicals into the country,” the EPA said in a release issued last evening.

It was also noticed that the company does not meet its reporting requirement for quarterly monitoring.

Meanwhile, EPA has shutdown RM Group and cited its management to a meeting on Thursday, 20 May 2021.

The exercise is part of a nationwide chemical inventory and effluent quality monitoring which stated on Wednesday, 5 May 2021.

The exercise would target all businesses involved in the sale and use of chemicals and is intended to assess proponents’ adherence to the 2020 chemical importation, transport, handling and storage guidelines of Liberia and to generate data for the national pollutant registry as required under Part V section 51 of the Environmental Protection and Management Law (EPML) of Liberia.

At the end of the exercise, EPA will develop a registry that accounts for the quantities and locations of all chemical stockpiled in the country so as to ably respond to any future natural or environmental disasters. The exercise will also bring all chemical importers and dealers into full compliance as required under the aforementioned regulatory instrument.

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