Using the just-proposed settlement between the business 3M’s PFAS deal and water utilities affected by forever chemicals as justification, a bipartisan coalition of 22 US states and territories is suing the company, claiming that doing so would shift responsibility for the pollution from the polluter to the providers.
Attorneys general from all across the nation protested a potential class action settlement that the parties disclosed last month by filing a move to intervene and a document of opposition to a federal district court on Wednesday.
With the caveat that the agreement is not an admission of culpability, 3M had made an offer of up to $10.3 billion in today’s money to qualified public water suppliers over a 13-year period.
Both companies that have already found PFAS-related chemicals as well as those who might in the future would be covered by the settlement.
So-called forever chemicals, which are known for their propensity to linger in the body and the environment, have been created and released into the environment by industry for many years.
Public Water Providers and PFAS Settlement
They are included in some types of firefighting foam and a wide range of home items. PFAS, or per- and polyfluoroalkyl compounds, come in thousands of different varieties, many of which 3M and other businesses, including DuPont, have long produced.
The settlement in question relates to multidistrict litigation, which was conducted before a federal judge in South Carolina and included hundreds of lawsuits filed against the producers of aqueous film form foam (AFFF), a firefighting foam that contains PFAS.
At industrial sites, airports that are open to the public, and military locations, AFFF is used to put out fuel-based fires.
They stated that practically every public water provider would be included by the provisional agreement, even those who have not yet filed a lawsuit or assessed the presence of PFAS in their water supplies.