ExxonMobil has agreed to pay the state of New Jersey nearly $10 million in settlement of a lawsuit the state filed against the company because of a toxic chemical dump. The dump contained PCBs and other dangerous chemicals. The contaminated wetlands contain carcinogens, even though there have been attempts to remove these hazardous substances.
A toxic torts attorney can help you go after compensation from the wrongdoers if you or a loved one suffered physical harm from toxic chemicals dumped by corporations. Let’s learn more about Exxon Mobil agreeing to pay New Jersey $9.5 million to settle a lawsuit over a toxic chemical dump.
The Back Story
According to News 12 in the Bronx, ExxonMobil had a refinery in Paulsboro, New Jersey. The company dumped its hazardous waste in wetlands in East Greenwich. In 1982, someone discovered unlabeled drums on property owned by B&B Chemical Company and on an adjacent property, the Lail property, in 1986. Although they denied liability, ExxonMobil signed an agreement with the State of New Jersey and Mr. Thomas Lail in 1993 concerning the removal of the drums and contaminated soil from Mr. Lail’s property.
ExxonMobil bought the Lail property in Gloucester County, New Jersey, in the late 1990s and performed additional remediation work on that land. The primary dangerous chemicals discharged or dumped on the Lail property were Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), a known carcinogen.
The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, The Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, and the Administrator of the New Jersey Spill Compensation Fund filed suit against ExxonMobil Corporation in the Superior County of New Jersey for Gloucester County in 2019. The lawsuit relied on:
- The Spill Compensation and Control Act (a New Jersey statute)
- The Water Pollution Control Act (a New Jersey statute), and
- The common law.
The lawsuit sought reimbursement for the costs the state agencies have spent and will have to spend in the future to remediate the damage to the former Lail property and other locations, like adjacent bodies of water, where the discharged hazardous substances and pollutants have migrated from the Lail property.
The Consent Judgment
In the Consent Judgment agreed to by the Plaintiffs and Defendant, ExxonMobil agrees to pay $9,500,000 to the Plaintiffs to settle the claim of Natural Resource Damages. The Consent Judgment specifically states that the payment does not include ExxonMobil’s obligation to the Plaintiffs for Past and Future cleanup and Removal Costs.
The Plaintiffs reserve the right to take legal action against ExxonMobil for any “past, present, or future discharge or unsatisfactory storage or containment of any hazardous substance outside the Lail property or on the Lail property.”The $9.5 million settlement does not include any money for people who suffered harm from exposure to the PCBs and other carcinogenic chemicals in the subject property. People who develop cancer and other adverse health consequences from these toxic chemicals will need to take legal action to hold ExxonMobil accountable for their injuries and losses. You will want to talk to a toxic torts attorney about your legal options. For help with your case contact our office today, we offer a free consultation.