Ohio ‘forever chemicals’ settlement triggers an additional $25 million for Delaware

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Chemours Company, along with DuPont and Corteva, Inc., settled an agreement with the State of Ohio for $110 million to resolve claims associated with manufacturing and selling per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).

The agreement triggered an additional $25 million for Delaware under a contingency in Delaware’s 2021 settlement with the same companies.

“We are thrilled that our forward-thinking settlement with DuPont and others is now $25 million more valuable to the State of Delaware.  That’s 50% more to restore our natural resources, to support public health initiatives in impacted communities, and to keep our neighbors healthy,” said Delaware Attorney General Kathy Jennings.

The Ohio agreement over what are sometimes known as “forever chemicals” resolves the state’s claims relating to releases of PFAS from the companies’ facilities, including the Washington Works site along the Ohio-West Virginia border.

The agreement also resolves claims relating to the manufacture and sale of PFAS-containing products and the state’s claims on aqueous film-forming foam (“AFFF”). Of the $110 million total payment, 80% will be allocated by the state for conduct related to discharges from Washington Works, and the remaining 20% will be allocated for other PFAS claims statewide, including AFFF.

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Under a binding memorandum of understanding between Chemours, DuPont, and Corteva agreed to in January 2021, Chemours will be responsible for 50% of the settlement costs, or $55 million, with DuPont and Corteva responsible for the remaining 50%.

This month, the companies received a favorable ruling on a class action lawsuit filed in Ohio over PFAs.

Two years ago, the companies and others reached a $50 million settlement with the State of Delaware.

The issue of PFA discharges in the Ohio area was the topic of a New York Times piece on a lawyer who pursued claims for victims. His work became the inspiration for a movie that DuPont described as inaccurate.

DuPont spun off Chemours in 2015 with critics claiming at the time the company was attempting to offload environmental liabilities. Corteva was spun off in DuPont’s merger with Dow that combined Dow and DuPont’s agrichemicals and seeds businesses. Chemours is based at DuPont’s former headquarters in Wilmington, with DuPont based outside the city and Corteva now headquartered in Indianapolis.

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