Thursday, Jan. 24, 2013 09:39 pm
CASH AND CHEMICALS
The City of Springfield received a cash settlement last week in a class action lawsuit over a controversial chemical. The herbicide Atrazine, which may cause heart problems or birth defects in humans according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, found its way into Lake Springfield as early as 1994. City Water, Light and Power says the concentration of Atrazine in Springfield’s drinking water supply never reached dangerous levels, thanks to efforts to remove the chemical from water before it reaches faucets. Still, the city documented water samples and participated in a class action lawsuit filed by the City of Greenville, Ill., against Atrazine maker Syngenta of Switzerland. Cities around the nation are now entitled to a cut of the $105 million settlement, with Springfield receiving more than $1.3 million – the third highest award among all lawsuit participants. CWLP says the money will go into its general water fund and be used for ongoing major projects. Meanwhile, Atrazine has been banned in the European Union, but it continues to be used widely in the U.S. For more information on the lawsuit, visit www.atrazinesettlement.com. For more information on Atrazine, visit www.bit.ly/EPAatrazine.