Articles

February 14, 2019

Southern Delaware chicken plant spilled up to 1 million gallons of wastewater: State

Source: https://www.delawareonline.com, February 13, 2019
By: Maddy Lauria

Mountaire Farms has been ordered to clean up to 1 million gallons of partially treated wastewater that spilled into the ground at its chicken plant near Millsboro, state officials said on Wednesday.

The spill was discovered about 5 a.m. on Wednesday and was caused “by mechanical failure of a wastewater system component,” according to a press release issued by the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control nearly 12 hours after the release.

State environmental officials said the leak was contained on Mountaire’s property and did not reach nearby Swan Creek.

“DNREC has directed Mountaire Farms to take all appropriate steps to mitigate this release and minimize any adverse impacts to the environment,” DNREC said in the release. Cleanup efforts are underway, as is an investigation by state regulators, according to the agency.…

February 12, 2019

Lawmakers Want Exelon Held Responsible for Conowingo Cleanup

Source: https://www.marylandmatters.org, February 11, 2019
By: Josh Kurtz

A bipartisan group of Maryland lawmakers wants Exelon Generation Co., LLC held financially responsible for some of the cleanup costs associated with pollution spilling over the Conowingo Dam, which the energy giant owns.

Del. Jay A. Jacobs (R-Upper Shore) has introduced a non-binding resolution stating the view of the General Assembly that Exelon “must pay a portion of the cleanup costs associated with the dam’s federal certification and at least a certain percent of the costs associated with the Susquehanna River’s Watershed Implementation Plan.”

The hydropower dam on the Susquehanna River, about 10 miles north of where it empties into the Chesapeake Bay, is seen as a major source of bay pollution coming upriver from Pennsylvania and New York. Major floods last summer spilled sediment, nutrients and other pollutants into the bay.…

February 12, 2019

Abandoned Brooklyn gas station blamed for L-train smell contaminated area for decades

Source: https://www.nydailynews.com, February 11, 2019
By: Clayton Guse

The defunct Brooklyn gas station thought to be the source of last week’s noxious smell on the L train has contaminated local groundwater for decades.

Over the 17 years between 1989 and 2006, the owners of the station at 2 Bushwick Ave., reported five chemical spills to the state Department of Environmental Conservation, public records show.

Gasoline spills in April 1989, January 1992 and January 1999 affected the local groundwater, and another gasoline spill in 2006 seeped into the soil, records show. The records don’t show how much gas was involved in the four spills.

A fifth spill in May 1989 dumped 20 gallons of gasoline into the local sewer system, the data shows.

Representatives from NYC Transit’s environmental and security divisions told the Daily News last week that a fuel tank abandoned at the former Shell outlet in East Williamsburg was the likely culprit of the stench that nauseated riders and hospitalized transit workers.

February 11, 2019

New Beazley Environmental Liability Coverage Targets Banks, Lenders

Source: https://www.insurancejournal.com, February 11, 2019

Specialist insurer Beazley has launched site lender environmental asset protection (SLEAP) cover to protect banks and other lenders from pollution risks that could seriously impair the value of property used as collateral for commercial loans.

In the event of both a loan default and the discovery of environmental contamination on a property, the policy will cover either the estimated clean-up costs or the loan balance, whichever is lower. The policy also pays clean-up costs for environmental contamination at properties owned by the lender as the result of a foreclosure.

In addition, the coverage protects the lender against third party claims for clean-up, bodily injury, property damage, and defense costs associated with the collateral property at all stages of a commercial loan and regardless of whether the loan is in default.…

February 11, 2019

Strategically preparing for construction professional liability risk

Source: https://www.propertycasualty360.com, February 11, 2019
By: Walter J. Adams, Jr.

February 7, 2019

Oil cleanup continues after 200,000 gallon spill at Granite City plant

Source: https://www.mdjonline.com, February 6, 2019
By: Denise Hollinshed

Cleanup continued Wednesday here after 200,000 gallons of used oil spilled from a company’s storage tanks, a portion of it contaminating nearby ground and the city sewer system, the Illinois Environment Protection Agency said.

The spill prompted the agency to seek an order banning storage of oil at the Future Environmental plant at 2101 Adams Street.

The agency said 500 to 1,000 gallons of the spilled oil escaped the plant’s secondary containment barrier. The oil was released from above-ground tanks at the facility, the Illinois EPA said. The spill was noticed when oil was spotted at a wastewater treatment plant.

“Absorbent booms were placed in the sewers and there is no impact to operations at the (treatment plant),” the agency said in a statement.

Some of the oil also reached a dirt-floor warehouse on a neighboring property, the agency said. The agency didn’t say what caused the spill or if it posed any health risks.…

February 7, 2019

Firefighting foam linked to water contamination across Massachusetts

Source: https://www.boston25news.com, February 7, 2019
By: Kathryn Burcham, Jason Solowski

State environmental officials are tracking an emerging threat to drinking water across Massachusetts linked to a firefighting foam used at military installations and airports.

“Back in 2012, 2013 we started showing these contaminates” said Dan Santos, director of the Barnstable Department of Public Works.

Testing revealed toxic levels of chemicals in the soil at the county fire and rescue training academy, only a few hundred yards from the town’s watershed. He says it was from years of use of Aqueous Film Forming Foam (AFFF) at the facility adjacent to the Barnstable Municipal Airport.

“When they use the firefighter foam to put out fires it goes on the ground. That foam which contains these chemicals seeps into the soil and binds to the soil particle and it stays there,” Santos said.

The Environmental Protection Agency recommends a level of 70 parts per trillion (ppt) for two chemical compounds – known as per and poly-fluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS in drinking water.  Santos said they found numbers in the thousands in the soil at the fire training facility.…

February 7, 2019

Nebraska plant to pay $45M in pollution settlement

Source: Associated Press, February 6, 2019
Posted on: http://www.advisen.com

A judge has approved a class-action settlement between Muscatine residents and a local factory that they blame for a noxious odor and haze and for causing health problems.

District Judge John Telleen on Tuesday approved the settlement over the Grain Processing Corporation plant, which makes corn-based products, The Muscatine Journal reported. The company agreed to pay $45 million to cover an estimated 14,000 claims and to spend $6.5 million on pollution controls at the Muscatine plant.

Residents sued the company in 2012, alleging that the plant was negligent with its emissions and the odor was a nuisance. The case later received class-action status.

GPC supports the settlement and believes it’s fair, said Joshua Frank, an attorney for the company. The company will continue to operate successfully in the area, he said.…

February 6, 2019

WISCONSIN FIRE MANUFACTURER COMBATS GROWING GROUNDWATER CONTAMINATION

Source: https://www.wqpmag.com, February 6, 2019

The fire manufacturer delayed releasing information about the contamination for four years

Tyco Fire Products, a Marinette, Wis., manufacturer of firefighting foam, knew there was soil and well contamination on its property dating back to October 2013, but failed to share the information with homeowners surrounding the property until November 2017, according to state records obtained by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The site faces per- and polyfluoralkyl substances (PFAS) contamination in groundwater stemming from its use of firefighting foam.

According to Tyco, the company knew about the contamination on their property, but did not make the information public until they found it to spread beyond its 380-acre fire technology center. After discovering the spread, the company began supplying bottled water to residents surrounding the site with well water contamination and was ordered by the state of Wisconsin to investigate the problem.

February 6, 2019

Federal lawsuit filed over drinking water contamination on Whidbey

Source: https://www.whidbeynewstimes.com, February 5, 2019
By: Jessie Stensland

Lawyers for a North Whidbey woman filed a lawsuit in federal court Tuesday against a manufacturing corporation and fire equipment companies they say are responsible for contamination of groundwater on the island with “highly toxic” chemicals found in a type of firefighting foam.

Testing by the Navy in recent years showed that wells near the Ault Field base on North Whidbey and Outlying Field Coupeville in Central Whidbey contained per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, collectively known as PFASs, that are present in aqueous film forming foam, or AFFF, used by Navy fire departments to extinguish aircraft fires.

The attorneys are seeking class action status and hope to add potentially thousands of other current and former Whidbey Island residents as plaintiffs in the lawsuit; the town of Coupeville is also a potential plaintiff, attorneys said.

The law firm Edelson of San Francisco and Seattle attorney Robert Teel are representing Krista Jackson is the lawsuit against the 3M Company, Tyco Fire Products, Buckeye Fire Equipment Company, Chemguard Inc. and National Foam Inc.…