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3M agrees $10.3B to settle ‘forever chemicals’ claims.

3M Reaches Tentative $10.3 Billion Deal Over US 'Forever Chemicals' Claims - 3M Co has reached a $10.3 billion settlement with several U.S. public water systems to settle water pollution claims resulting from "forever chemical products," The chemical firm announced its announcement on Thursday.

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The company stated that the settlement would offer money over 13 years to municipalities, towns and other water systems of the public utility to study and treat the effects of polyfluoroalkyl and per-substances, also known as PFAS.

3M, battling hundreds of lawsuits related to PFAS contamination, refused to admit liability and stated that the funds would be used to help fund the rehabilitation of the public system of water that can detect PFAS “at any levels.”

“We have concluded the largest settlement for drinking water in American history. The settlement will be used to remove PFAS from drinking waters offered to the general public,” Scott Summy, the lead attorney representing the water companies, sued 3M in an official statement. “The outcome is that millions of Americans can live longer and better lives with no PFAS within their water supply.”

3M was set to appear in a trial at South Carolina federal court in a suit filed from Stuart, Florida, earlier this month. The judge overseeing the trial delayed it until the day it was due to begin.

Stuart declared in its lawsuit of 2018 that the company produced or offered firefighting foams with PFAs that contaminated local groundwater and soil and demanded over $100 million in the filtration and remediation process. This was just one of over 4,000 suits brought in the case against 3M and other chemical firms.

They are called “forever chemicals” because they don’t easily degrade in the human body or the environment; PFAS are found in many products ranging from non-stick cookware to cosmetics and have been connected to cancer, hormone imbalance and environmental damage.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency declared PFAS an “urgent ecological and health concern.”

The EPA has taken several actions recently to strengthen regulations on the chemicals. It also in March, it announced the first nationwide drinking-water standards that cover six chemical substances.

On December, 3M announced a date of 2025 to stop making PFAS.

Three other major chemical companies, Chemours Co (CC.N), DuPont de Nemours Inc (DD.N) and Corteva Inc (CTVA.N), have announced in the last month that they had signed an agreement in principle of $1.19 billion to resolve the claims they had contaminated U.S. public water systems by PFAS.

3M is still facing lawsuits related to PFAS brought by people with personal injury or property damage claims, as in lawsuits filed by U.S. states over damages to natural resources like lakes and rivers, which weren’t part of the settlement.

Learn More: Fire Protection Company Kidde-Fenwal Files For Bankruptcy Citing PFAS Lawsuits

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