Matson Pays for Molasses Spill


Published Jul 30, 2015 3:14 PM by The Maritime Executive

Matson Navigation has agreed to pay up to $15.4 million in restitution for the 2013 molasses spill in Honolulu Harbor. The company has also agreed to cease all molasses operation in Hawaii as well as pay for removing its molasses tanks and any remaining molasses. About 1,400 tons of molasses leaked into the harbor in September 2013 killing fish and marine life. The settlement includes a combination of cash, restoration and environmental funding.  

Matson will pay Hawaiian government $5.9 million towards re-growing a coral damaged in the spill and reimbursing the state for its cleanup efforts. The company will also provide a contribution to the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s World Conservation Congress.

Estimates of the cost related to closing its molasses operations range between $5.5 million and $9.5 million. It is expected that Matson will spent about $15 million in settlement costs. Earlier this year, Matson Terminals plead guilty to federal criminal charges for illegally releasing molasses into the harbor and paid fines and restitution totaling $1 million, which include $600K that went to the Waikiki Aquarium and Sustainability Coastlines of Hawaii.