Laundry service, EPA agree to emissions penalty

Alltex Uniform Rental Service Inc., a Manchester-based industrial laundry service, and its parent company, G&K Services, will pay a $65,000 penalty to settle charges of emitting pollutants without a proper permit.In addition, the company has agreed to undertake a “supplemental environmental project” to replace about $220,000 old, polluting wood stoves in southern New Hampshire with new, cleaner models and to install equipment at its facility to remove approximately 20 tons per year of emissions of volatile organic compounds, or VOCs.The U.S. Environmental Protection announced the settlement July 15.On Friday, the EPA charged Alltex with installing new industrial laundry equipment at its location at 324 Taylor St. back in 1997 without obtaining a New Source Review permit, which is required for sources with the potential to emit 50 tons of volatile organic compounds, according to a filing in U.S. District Court in Concord.In the summer of 1997 – barely six months after the law became effective — Alltex installed a 450-pound dryer and two 450-pound washers, each capable of processing 500 to 1,000 pounds of laundry, including uniforms, work clothes, shop and print towels, floor mats, dust mops and rags used to wipes oils and solvents from machinery full of hazardous pollutants, the EPA said.An inspection in 2008 and subsequent testing in 2009 revealed that the facility had the potential to admit 50 tons of VOCs a year into the air.The consent degree, giving more details of the settlement, were supposed to be filed in district court and released on the EPA website, but were not available at NHBR deadline. — BOB SANDERS/NEW HAPSHIRE BUSINESS REVIEW

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