Luxury hotelier Ritz-Carlton was ordered to pay more than half a million dollars in penalties Wednesday for the unlawful disposal of hazardous waste at eight of its California locations in six counties.
The penalties stem from a lawsuit filed in Riverside County Superior Court by the district attorneys of Riverside, Los Angeles, Orange, Placer, Santa Barbara, San Francisco and San Mateo counties as well as the Los Angeles city attorney’s office.
“The lawsuit alleges that instead of storing, transporting, and disposing of hazardous waste at authorized hazardous waste facilities, The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company illegally disposed of hazardous waste in the trash and illegally transported it to local landfills not permitted to receive such waste product,” the Riverside County district attorney’s office said in a release.
The materials included batteries, electronics, aerosols, flammable liquids, cleaning agents and other “reactive, toxic and corrosive materials.”
The Delaware-based hotel firm has already implemented improved policies, the office said, and is now using state-registered haulers to collect and transport its hazardous waste.
As part of the judgment, the hotel chain was ordered to pay a total of $535,000 in penalties and other costs, including $400,000 in civil penalties, $100,000 to fund environmental projects in the state and $35,000 in cost reimbursement.
Riverside County alone will receive $91,000 of the civil penalty and $14,513 of the cost reimbursement.