The Cape Fear Public Utility Authority is accusing Chemours/DuPont of “willful and wanton” conduct over the company’s secret discharge of GenX and other pollutants into the Cape Fear River. Those chemical compounds wound up in the drinking water of several communities near the Fayetteville Works plant and farther downstream, including Wilmington.
The allegation was one of several in a complaint filed this afternoon in federal court against the company. The utility is asking the court for a jury trial, which given widespread concern about the contamination, Chemours is likely to oppose.
The utility is basing its action on Chemours/DuPont’s alleged “nuisance, negligence, trespass, harm to riparian rights, failure to warn, and negligent manufacture (products liability).” The complaint also alleges Chemours and DuPont “recklessly disregarded the rights and safety of others.”
The filing contains several points regarding what DuPont knew concerning the health effects of GenX and similar compounds like C8, which has been linked to cancer. The company had begun studying the health effects of GenX no later than 1963, according to the court documents.