More lawsuits filed by NJ against alleged urban polluters

David Madden
December 06, 2018 - 5:52 pm
Tirpok Cleaners

Office of the Attorney General / Tim Larsen

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CAMDEN, N.J. (KYW Newsradio) — A second round of environmental lawsuits are being filed in New Jersey, this time against the owners of eight polluted sites, three of which are in or near Camden.

A second round of environmental lawsuits are being filed in New Jersey, this time against the owners of eight polluted sites, three of which are in or near Camden.
David Madden/KYW Newsradio
Six were filed over the summer. These new ones also go after urban locations that have long been problems for the towns they’re in.

Attorney General Gurbir Grewal said it’s just right thing to do to go after environmental justice.

“Everyone, no matter their race, ethnicity, color, national origin or income, deserves to live and work in a healthy and clean environment,” Grewal told reporters at a press conference in Camden.

One site in Pennsauken used to provide much of Camden with drinking water. Another is a former gas station in Camden, now an auto repair shop. And a third site in Palmyra was a sand and gravel business, now a closed illegal dump. The rest include sites in Trenton, Flemington, Warren County and two in the city of Newark.

The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection is joining in taking these alleged polluters to court.

“We must step up not only to work together to clean up those places but to make sure that the people responsible for them pay for the cost of cleaning them up,” DEP Commissioner Catherine McCabe added.

Grewal conceded it may take years for these lawsuits to make their way through civil courts, but it’s worth the effort. His office will also be restricted to set up a unit specifically tasked with handling and pursuing these cases going forward, promising more actions statewide in the near future.