The Stream, March 5, 2020: Chemical Company DuPont Requests Mistrial After Court Awards $50 Million to Couple in PFAS-Related Lawsuit

The Global Rundown

Chemical company DuPont asks an Ohio federal court to declare a mistrial after $50 million was awarded to a couple over a PFAS lawsuit. Mexico will let the public decide whether a large U.S.-owned brewery in the northern part of the country should open, which activists claim could cause severe water shortages. A new study finds rising radium levels in several parts of Wisconsin. Residents of Yorkshire, England, say it “will take a lot of recovery” to bounce back from recent flooding. U.S. President Donald Trump says the United States will continue trying to help Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan broker a deal over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam

“President Trump emphasized that the U.S. administration will keep up tireless efforts and coordination with Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia over this vital issue until the three countries sign an agreement over the Renaissance Dam.” –Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi in a statement this week. After years of negotiation over the controversial dam, Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan were expected to sign an agreement in Washington, D.C., last week, but Ethiopia failed to attend the meeting. The United States became involved in the negotiations in recent months. Reuters 

In context: HotSpots H2O: Spotlight on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam

Latest WaterNews from Circle of Blue

What’s Up With Water – March 2, 2020 — This week’s edition of What’s Up With Water includes coverage on a new law in Madhya Pradesh, India calling water a human right, a ruling against temporary well permits used in poultry operations in Oklahoma, and a an initiative in Chicago to help conserve water drawn from Lake Michigan.  

HotSpots H2O: Government Response Criticized as Third Storm Deluges the United KingdomLast month was the wettest February ever recorded in the United Kingdom, and more rain is expected over the next week, warns the country’s Met Office.

By The Numbers

$50 million Amount awarded to a testicular cancer survivor and his wife in a lawsuit against DuPont chemical company, whose use of toxic PFAS chemicals allegedly caused the man’s illness. DuPont has asked the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio to declare a mistrial, saying that jurors were coerced into believing that DuPont’s use of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) was directly linked to the cancer. Reuters

In context: As PFAS Lawsuits Proliferate, Legal Tactics Emerge

9 feet (3 meters) Amount of water that submerged some homes in Yorkshire, England. Thousands of homes across the United Kingdom have been affected by the ongoing flooding. BBC

In context: HotSpots H2O: Government Response Criticized as Third Storm Deluges the United Kingdom.

Science, Studies, and Reports

A new study by the University of Wisconsin-Madison has detected increasing radium levels in public water supplies in suburban Milwaukee and other parts of the state. Researchers say they are unsure why radium levels are on the rise, but will continue to investigate the trend. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel 

On the Radar

A large brewery, owned by U.S.-based Constellation Brands Inc, is under construction in northern Mexico. The brewery has drawn widespread criticism from environmentalists and locals, who say the plant could intensify water shortages in the already parched region. This week, Mexican president Andrés Manuel López Obrador said the government would hold a “consultation” with the public to help determine whether the brewery should be allowed to open, an idea that U.S. officials have expressed opposition toward. Reuters

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