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Company to pay $245M toward cleanup of Kalamazoo River PCBs

Posted: 1:19 PM, Dec 11, 2019
Updated: 2019-12-12 03:49:44-05
Waterway stays closed as more Kalamazoo River cleanup begins

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — Federal officials have announced the company partially responsible for contaminating the Kalamazoo River will pay a $245 million deal.

The Environmental Protection Agency and the Justice Department negotiated the settlement with NCR Corp, which manufactured carbonless copy paper. The Allied Paper Mill then dumped the product in the Kalamazoo River near the site in Parchment.

The company was among several whose paper mills dumped toxic PCBs into the Kalamazoo River from the 1950s to the 1970s. Cleanup has been underway for more than 20 years.

The EPA and the U.S. Justice Department reached a settlement with NCR Corp on Wednesday. The agreement means about 80 miles of the Kalamazoo River wil be cleaned, as well as 3 miles of Portage Creek. The deal with NCR will pay for cleanup of floodplain soils and dredging of river sediments. It also will remove an aging dam in Allegan County.

"This settlement is an important step for the state and the federal government in cleaning up contamination in or near the Kalamazoo River," said Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel in a statement.

The project for removal is expected to take years.