California Biodiesel Firm Violates Clean Water Act

July 17, 2019

Firm discharges industrial wastewater into city sewer system

A biodiesel firm in Stockton, Calif., violated the Clean Water Act discharging industrial wastewater into the city’s sewer system and must pay a fine. 

According to, a federal judged ordered the company American Biodiesel Inc. pay $256,206 to the city and the Port of Stockton and was levied a $401,000 fine. The company operates the Port of Stockton under the name Community Fuels.

According to, biodiesel is an alternative to traditional diesel fuel. It is made from materials such as recycled cooking grease and contains lower emissions. The firm also admitted to tampering with monitoring devices designed to detect clean water standards. 

The tampering occurred to underreport acid and pollutant levels and volumes that would have exceeded what is allowed by the city’s regulations, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. American Biodiesel employees and brothers Christoper and Jeremiah Young are charged with “conspiracy, tampering with monitoring equipment and unlawful discharge of industrial wastewater,” according to Christopher is also being charged with “making a false statement and witness tampering.” 

This case is currently being investigated by the U.S. EPA, the San Joaquin County District Attorney’s Office, the city’s Municipal Utilities Department, the San Joaquin County Environmental Health Department, the Port of Stockton, and the California Department of Toxic Substances Control.