Toxic chemicals in our waterways endanger wildlife and public health, causing problems ranging from reduced growth and fertility to cancer and death. Humans, birds of prey and other animals high on the food chain are most at risk of certain bio-accumulating toxins such as heavy metals. Other toxics can wipe out the tiny organisms that form the base of the food chain.
Toxic chemicals can re-enter our waterways when they are disturbed by storms or activities that shift the sediments. Once in the water, toxic chemicals are assimilated into the living organisms in our waterways. Although toxic releases have been greatly reduced in recent years, egregious violations of government safety standards still exist.
WHAT WE ARE DOING
CFE/Save the Sound attorneys fight to protect our water by filing suit against companies who are found to be in violation of their discharge permits.
In 2009, CFE/Save the Sound successfully challenged five Connecticut companies under the federal Clean Water Act for chronically discharging toxic chemicals, like heavy metals and cyanide, into our rivers for years. After being threatened with lawsuits by CFE/Save the Sound, four of the companies, Electric Boat (Groton), Whyco Finishing Technologies (Thomaston), Allegheny Ludlum (Wallingford), and Cytec Industries (Wallingford), agreed to end their discharges and pay more than $3 million in penalties directed towards water improvements. The fifth company, Atlantic Wire (Branford), closed its doors and admitted criminal liability.
At the time, then Attorney General Richard Blumenthal called these "the most important combined [enforcement] result in recent years, perhaps decades."
Read more on our Legal Docket page