Salem Radio Network News Monday, December 4, 2023


3M, Florida city move toward resolving PFAS chemicals claim, seek trial delay

(Reuters) -U.S. industrial conglomerate 3M Co and the city of Stuart, Florida are making “significant” progress to settle a water pollution suit tied to toxic “forever chemicals” and sought to delay a trial, according to a court filing on Sunday.

3M was scheduled to face trial in South Carolina federal court on Monday in a lawsuit brought by the Florida city accusing the company of manufacturing PFAS, or per- and polyflouroalkyl substances, despite knowing for decades that the chemicals can cause cancer and other ailments.

The company and lawyers for the city did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The request for a delay comes after three major chemicals companies, Chemours Co, DuPont de Nemours Inc and Corteva Inc, last Friday said they had reached an agreement in principle to settle claims they contaminated U.S. public water systems with PFAS for $1.19 billion.

Bloomberg News reported last Friday that 3M had struck a tentative $10 billion deal with U.S. cities and towns to resolve the PFAS water pollution lawsuits it is facing. Reuters could not immediately confirm that report.

Dubbed “forever chemicals” as they do not easily break down in the human body or environment, PFAS are used in a wide range of products from firefighting foams to cosmetics and have been linked to cancer, hormonal dysfunction and environmental damage.

The city of Stuart is seeking more than $100 million from 3M to pay for water filtration and soil remediation.

The trial had been chosen as the first to test the viability of similar claims made by water providers that have sued the company.

(Reporting by Maria Ponnezhath in Bengaluru and Clark Mindock in New York; Editing by Kim Coghill and Sonali Paul)


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