Trident Seafoods Corp., Seattle, Wash., announced plans to reduce emissions of ozone-depleting substances from refrigeration equipment on its vessels, under a proposed settlement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Department of Justice. Under the settlement, Trident will spend up to $23 million to reduce coolant leaks from refrigerators and other equipment, use alternative refrigerants and improve company-wide compliance.

Within its numerous fish catching and processing vessels, Trident uses thousands of pounds of ozone-depleting substances as refrigerants, causing over 200,000 pounds of harmful refrigerant to be released into the atmosphere.

Trident will retrofit or retire 23 refrigeration appliances used on 14 marine vessels to use an alternative refrigerant that does not harm the ozone layer. Trident will also retrofit nine of these appliances as part of a Supplemental Environmental Project. Because of these retrofits, nearly 100,000 pounds of harmful refrigerant will be removed from use.

Trident will also conduct routine leak inspections of all appliances, promptly repair leaks, install leak detectors to monitor appliances for leaks, add fluorescent dye into appliances to assist staff in detecting leaks, compile information to assist in identifying common failure points on appliances and train employees to properly manage the appliances.

Trident and its subsidiaries Royal Viking Inc. and Golden Dawn LLC own and operate four factory processor vessels, one freighter vessel, nearly 30 catcher and tender vessels and 10 land-based facilities in Alaska and the Pacific Northwest. In most of these vessels and facilities, Trident uses ozone-depleting HCFCs in its refrigeration appliances in sizes ranging from less than 50 pounds of refrigerant to greater than 5,000 pounds of refrigerant.