The law is designed to protect businesses and ensure that companies are able to do business in a reasonably efficient and secure manner. However, this does not mean that a company can just simply do whatever it wants without worry of consequence in California or any other other state. Companies in just about any industry will have to deal with environmental compliance and enforcement.
This is definitely true in the energy industry where government regulations are more than significant. One company in this industry has found this out the hard way after it was fined for civil violations. XTO Energy, Inc., which is an ExxonMobil subsidiary, is expected to spend $3 million on eight sites that had sustained environmental damage from the company’s activities.
The money spent by XTO Energy will be used to restore damage caused by the company dumping fill material into wetlands and streams during its hydraulic fracturing operations. Apparently, the company did not have the necessary permit for using the sites for dumping fill. This resulted in it being fined $2.3 million for civil violations.
What happened to this energy company can happen to any other company in California. Therefore, it is a good idea for company managers, owners and executives to make sure their operations take into consideration environmental compliance and enforcement aspects. This can help to avoid fines levied by regulating government agencies. However, if a company does find itself facing scrutiny from regulators, it may need to take legal action in court to defend its business interests.
Source: pennenergy.com, “XTO Energy to restore areas affected by natural gas extraction“, Dec. 23, 2014