By MADISON HIRNEISEN
THE CENTER SQUARE
(The Center Square) – DISH Network has agreed to pay $5.5 million as part of a settlement accusing the company of mismanaging and illegally disposing of hazardous waste, California officials announced Wednesday.
For over a decade, DISH allegedly violated state environmental laws and regulations by illegally disposing of hazardous waste and sending it to facilities that are not equipped to handle it, Attorney General Rob Bonta said Wednesday.
Mr. Bonta said audits over the course of several years found that DISH, who provides satellite television to customers, “repeatedly disposed of these objects in trash bins destined for municipal landfills,” thus violating waste control and unfair competition laws.
“For years, DISH carelessly disposed of and sent hazardous waste to local landfills, ignoring the consequences for our communities and our environment,” Mr. Bonta said in a statement. “From there, hazardous chemical elements from electronic devices, batteries, aerosols, and more could seep into soil and contaminate our environment.
“Large corporations like DISH have a responsibility to respect our environmental laws and do their part to protect our state’s precious resources.”
As a result of the settlement, DISH is required to pay $5.5 million, which includes nearly $3.32 million in civil penalties. Additionally, DISH is required to spend $500,000 to implement “enhanced environmental compliance measures” at its 25 California facilities.
The settlement also requires the company to hire an auditor to complete compliance checks at its facilities, regularly inspect facility trash dumpsters to check for hazardous waste and train employees on California’s hazardous waste laws.
“Hazardous electronic waste is ubiquitous, and everyone must do their part to keep these items out of the landfill, especially large corporations who handle high volumes of electronic waste,” Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O’Malley, who announced the settlement alongside Mr. Bonta, said in a statement on Wednesday.
DISH Network did not immediately respond to a request for comment.