CHICAGO, IL – The Justice Department and the Environmental Protection

Agency today announced they have reached an agreement with Dominicks Finer

Foods LLC to resolve alleged violations of federal regulations to protect

stratospheric ozone.

Under the agreement, Dominicks will take steps that will cut by over 35 tons

future releases of chlorofluorocarbon refrigerants, known as CFCs, that

destroy stratospheric or good ozone. Within two years, Dominicks will

retrofit 23 of its supermarkets in and around Chicago with a system that uses

non-ozone-depleting refrigerant and will retrofit or retire the refrigeration

systems in six additional Chicago-area stores. The company also agreed that,

in any new stores built after the agreement takes effect, it will only install

commercial refrigeration units that use an EPA-approved non-ozone- depleting

refrigerant. The company will pay a civil penalty of $85,000 for alleged past

leaks of ozone-depleting refrigerants.

Todays agreement demonstrates that strong enforcement of our nations

environmental laws results in a much safer environment, said Assistant

Attorney General Tom Sansonetti. The actions Dominicks has agreed to today

will benefit not only the ozone layer, but will also ensure a safer

environment for our future generations.

We commend Dominicks for taking this positive step to protect the

stratospheric ozone layer by agreeing to convert the refrigeration equipment

in all of its stores, said EPA Region 5 Administrator Thomas V. Skinner.

Other steps include development of a plan to manage its refrigerants and

assessment of the companys facilities performance in EPAs Energy Star

Building Program.

The agreement resolves a complaint alleging that Dominicks violated EPA

commercial refrigerant leak repair, testing, recordkeeping and reporting

regulations. This is EPAs first settlement with a grocery store and the first

settlement under the commercial refrigerant leak repair regulations of the

Clean Air Act.

When CFC refrigerants deplete the stratospheric ozone layer, dangerous amounts

of cancer-causing ultraviolet rays from the sun strike the earth. Production

of some of these chemicals was stopped in 1995, and federal law strictly

controls their use and handling.