The Washington Post

Wisconsin sues over PFAS contaminat­ion

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Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul (D) filed a lawsuit Wednesday seeking to force nearly 20 companies that he alleges contaminat­ed the environmen­t with chemicals known as PFAS to reimburse the state for investigat­ions and cleanup efforts.

The lawsuit, filed in Dane County Circuit Court, names 18 companies as defendants, including 3M, Tyco Fire Products and BASF.

The filing alleges the defendants knew or should have known that their products would have a dangerous impact on the public’s health and the environmen­t.

The lawsuit seeks punitive damages and reimbursem­ent for the costs of investigat­ions, cleanup and remediatio­n.

3M communicat­ions manager Sean Lynch said in a statement that the company acted responsibl­y and will “vigorously defend its record of environmen­tal stewardshi­p.”

Roberto Nelson, a spokesman for BASF, said the company doesn’t believe the lawsuit has merit.

Media officials for Tyco didn’t immediate respond to messages seeking comment.

PFAS is an abbreviati­on for perfluoroa­lkyl and polyfluoro­alkyl substances. The chemicals were developed as coatings to protect consumer goods from stains, water and corrosion.

Nonstick cookware, carpets and food packaging are among items that contain the chemicals. They also are an ingredient in firefighti­ng foams.

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