D.R. Horton to pay civil penalties for Clean Water Act violations across multiple states

April 12, 2024
The nation's largest homebuilder will have to implement stormwater compliance measures and complete a supplemental environmental project as well.

D.R. Horton, Inc., the nation’s largest homebuilder, and its subsidiary, D.R. Horton, Inc. – Birmingham, have resolved allegations that they violated requirements of the Clean Water Act (CWA).

The allegations related to stormwater discharges associated with construction activity at 16 locations across Alabama, North Carolina and South Carolina.

Under the proposed consent decree Horton will implement a comprehensive stormwater compliance program at the hundreds of home construction sites they operate within EPA Region 4.

Horton will also pay a civil penalty of $400,000. A portion of which will be directed to the Alabama Department of Environmental Management and the State of South Carolina, who joined this settlement.

Horton will also commit to spending at least $400,000 on a Supplemental Environmental Project to improve water quality by decreasing pollutant loads in stormwater runoff by increasing stormwater infiltration.

“All homebuilders, including Horton, must comply with Clean Water Act provisions to prevent waterways from being contaminated by sediment discharges and other pollutants from stormwater runoff,” said Acting EPA Region 4 Administrator Jeaneanne Gettle in a press release. “This consent decree was developed with Horton, along with the cooperation of state agencies, to ensure that Horton implements a comprehensive stormwater management program at the many hundreds of home construction sites they operate across the Southeast to protect nearby waterways and the communities that live along them.”

The proposed consent decree is designed to result in effective stormwater runoff management at Horton’s construction sites. According to the press release, this will result in an estimated annual reduction of 45.5 million pounds of total suspended solids in affected waters.

The consent decree is subject to a 30-day public comment period and approval by the federal court.