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AG reaches settlement with company over release of PFAS from Brighton facility

Rules regulating PFAS contamination in drinking water now in effect in Michigan
Posted at 3:39 PM, Jan 30, 2023

(WXYZ) — Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel said her office has reached a settlement in a lawsuit against a company over the release PFAS near a southeast Michigan facility.

According to the AG's office, the lawsuit was against Asahi Kasei Plastics North American Inc. and was over the release of PFAS from Asahi's former facility in Brighton.

The office said the consent degree signed for the settlement will require Asahi to investigate PFAS released into the soil, groundwater and surface water discharged from the facility. Also, if concentrations exceed state criteria, they will have to take additional steps to address it.

The investigation must be submitted to and approved by the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) and made available for public comment before the investigation plans are approved.

Finally, Asahi will have to pay the state's past and future oversight costs and costs of litigation for the lawsuit and PFAS release, the state said.

“The agreed-upon framework for compliance at this site requires work under an enforceable schedule and is a favorable outcome for Michigan,” Nessel said in a statement.  “This settlement reflects my promise to protect the public and the environment from the harmful impacts of PFAS and hold companies responsible for contamination.  My office and I will continue to pursue that goal, in court or cooperatively.”  

“EGLE is pleased with Attorney General Nessel’s work to help protect Michiganders from PFAS contamination and ensure the responsible party takes appropriate action to investigate and address hazardous releases,” EGLE Acting Director Dan Eichinger added in a statement. “EGLE continue to work to identify, assess and address PFAS sites throughout the state, holding polluters accountable and protecting our state’s resources and people.”

The state has sued more than a dozen different people over alleged PFAS releases, and there are currently six PFAS cases filed under a state-approved contract with Special Assistant Attorneys General retained to assist in the litigation.