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The agrochemical company Monsanto has reached a settlement and will pay a historic $698 million settlement for allegedly polluting Oregon for over 90 years.

Source: KGW News/YouTube

Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum announced the historic settlement after Monsanto was found to be polluting the state for nearly a century. Monsanto was the only manufacturer, seller, and distributor of pollutant polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). These toxic compounds were once used in coolants, electrical equipment, devices, and products.

PCBs are known to cause cancer and other dangerous health effects in both humans and animals. They impair the endocrine, neurologic, and reproductive systems and can pollute waterways, kill plants, and degrade the soil.

The legal complaint alleges that Monsanto was aware as early as 1947 that PCBs were highly toxic. Although they had this knowledge, they continued to produce and promote the compounds for decades until 1977 and the EPA ban on PCBs began in 1979. The lawsuit asked for damages for the harm done to Oregon from PCB contamination and clean-up costs.

“Monsanto’s toxic legacy unfortunately lives on in our lands, rivers and other waterways – and poses ongoing risks to the health of our people and our environment,” Rosenblum said.

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