U.S. Water News Online
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- The environmental organization Black
Warrior Riverkeeper Inc. has filed federal lawsuits against two
Alabama companies, claiming the firms have polluted waterways.
Riverkeeper filed a lawsuit against Alabama Biodiesel Corp. of
Moundville, contending the company discharged grease and
vegetable-based oil about 20 times between June 2006 and August 2007.
It also joined Friends of the Locust Fork River in filing suit
against Metro Recycling Inc., which operates a tire disposal landfill
in Blount County, claiming the company discharged pollutants into
Whites Creek, a tributary of the Locust Fork and Black Warrior River.
Both lawsuits ask a judge to find the companies in violation of
the Federal Water Pollution Control Act and the Alabama Water
Pollution Control Act. It also asks a judge to order the companies to
stop polluting the rivers, and fine them $32,500 for each day they
violated the acts.
Richard Campo, vice president of Alabama Biodiesel, said he wasn't
aware of the lawsuit, which was filed Aug. 20 in federal court in
Birmingham. He said the company had met with the Riverkeeper group
about some of its concerns and planned to meet with representatives
again this week.
He also said the company has been working with the Alabama
Department of Environmental Management to develop a pollution permit
application, since this was the state's first biodiesel fuel
Attempts to reach him were not immediately successful.
Mark Martin, an attorney for Riverkeeper, said complaints came
from residents living downstream from the biodiesel plant.
"We've had a lot of complaints about oily stuff in the water,"
In the suit against Metro Recycling, which was filed Aug. 21, the
environmental groups say the pollutants discharged into Whites Creek
included benzene, chloromethane, ethylbenzene, toluene, vinyl
chloride and xylenes.
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