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posted by janrinok on Tuesday July 29 2014, @05:56PM   Printer-friendly
from the big-wins-can-happen-in-small-places dept.

Natural Society reports

The West Virginia State Supreme Court finalized a big blow to the biotech giant Monsanto this month, finishing a settlement causing Monsanto to pay $93 million to the tiny town of Nitro, West Virginia for poisoning citizens with Agent Orange chemicals. The settlement was approved last year, but details were worked out only weeks ago as to how the funds were to be spent.

The settlement will require Monsanto to do the following:

  • $9 million will be spent to clean dioxin contaminated dust from 4500 homes.
  • $21 million will be spent to test to see if people have been poisoned with dioxin.
  • Citizens will be monitored for such poisoning for 30 years, not just a few months.
  • An additional $63 million is to be allotted if additional tests for dioxin contamination testing is necessary.
  • Anyone who lived in the Nitro area between Jan. 1, 1948, and Sept. 3, 2010 will be tested for dioxin. Although they must show proof they lived in the area, they will be eligible for testing even if they no longer live in Nitro.
  • Former or present employees of Monsanto are not eligible for any of these benefits.
  • An office will be set up to organize testing for Nitro citizens. The registration of participants is to be overlooked by Charleston attorney Thomas Flaherty, who was appointed by the court.
  • Residents have a right to file individual suits against Monsanto if medical tests show they suffered physical harm due to dioxin exposure.
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  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by VLM on Tuesday July 29 2014, @06:07PM

    by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday July 29 2014, @06:07PM (#75168)

    "$9 million will be spent to clean dioxin contaminated dust from 4500 homes"

    Hmmm $2K per house. From tangential involvement with remediation companies, that means they'll barely sweep the floors. That's like one asbestos removal team working one day, or so.

    Is there a typo and they meant $9B or $90M? That'll get some serious remediation work done.

    My wife had a rather large piece of family furniture stripped because of century (centuries?) old lead paint and the EPA certified whatever to strip it was about $500 so I'm not thinking 4 times as much will help. So you can't even strip contaminated paint off the outside walls for that. And thats only maybe a fifth of a roof, although that varies.

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  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Alfred on Tuesday July 29 2014, @06:19PM

    by Alfred (4006) on Tuesday July 29 2014, @06:19PM (#75178) Journal

    Given that the company didn't have issue with using agent orange stateside, for who knows what reason, they will probably clean the dust with compressed air blowing it to the neighbor, get it certified clean, just to blow it back from the neighbor the next day. You could do that for under 2k each.

    Still why use agent orange here? Was this like that carcinogen dispersion in St. Louis thing? Massive scale experiments?