The Washington Post
Wisconsin sues over PFAS contamination
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.