An electric charging company was hit with a punishment of $2.7 million by Oregon environmental regulators after allegations surfaced that the company sold fake credits through the state agency that oversees the clean fuels programme.
According to Oregon Public Broadcasting, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality announced on Friday that it uncovered Thompson Technical Services, also known as TTS Charging, engaged in the sale of over $2 million worth of false credits.
The programme, which went into effect in 2016, is intended to assist the state in cutting its emissions of greenhouse gases from the transportation sector by 37 per cent by the year 2035. Companies that create alternative fuels for transportation, such as electricity or biofuels, can receive credits from the programme as an incentive. After that, those businesses are able to sell credits to other businesses so that those latter businesses can comply with state regulations on emissions.
According to the DEQ, TTS Charging made a fraudulent claim in June for more than 16,000 in credits, stating that it distributed approximately 15 million kilowatt hours of electricity from three different charging stations for vehicles.
A spokesperson for the organisation named Harry Esteve stated that the company “hadn’t disbursed any electricity, and they hadn’t even set up the charging stations.”
After then, the company sold the credits to a Canadian company that specialises in the transportation of oil and natural gas for close to $1.8 million. Elbow River Marketing is located in Canada.
The authorization for TTS Charging to participate in the clean fuels programme has been cancelled by the state agency. The government has given the company the order to purchase valid credits to replace the ones it fraudulently claimed and sold, in addition to paying the $2.7 million in a civil penalty that it owes.
According to the government, the clean fuels programme successfully cut 7.6 million tonnes of emissions of greenhouse gases when it was first implemented.
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