CLF to Sue Schnitzer Steel for Polluting Rivers

Lawsuit will address toxic stormwater spilling from ten scrap metal facilities in MA, NH, and Puerto Rico

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The Mystic River in Everett, MA. Photo: Alex Maclean

December 20, 2021 (BOSTON, MA) – Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) has notified Schnitzer Steel of its intent to sue for Clean Water Act violations at ten scrap metal facilities in New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Puerto Rico. The company’s stormwater runoff is polluting nearby rivers with toxic metals like lead and petroleum products every time it rains.

“Harmful pollution from Schnitzer’s properties is contaminating precious waters used for drinking and recreation,” said Heather Govern, Vice President of Clean Air and Water at CLF. “This billion-dollar company needs to comply with federal law and properly manage its stormwater runoff. Our waters deserve better.”

Schnitzer noncompliant facilities are in Manchester and Concord, New Hampshire, Worcester and Everett, Massachusetts, and Puerto Rico. Every time it rains, toxic chemicals from the piles of broken and rusted metal on each of these sites flows directly to the Blackstone River, the Merrimack River, the Mystic River, and several bays and rivers in Puerto Rico. This type of runoff causes poor water quality, harming natural ecosystems and marine life.

CLF experts are available for further comment.