What is PFAS?

PFAS, short for perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances and related substances, PFAO, PFOS, also collectively known as PFCs. PFCs are a family of man-made chemicals that have been used widely in the production of a number of consumer goods, including non-stick cookware, stain repellants, firefighting foam, and food-packaging materials.  PFAS has been in the news lately […]

What is Tetrachloroethylene (PCE)?

Tetrachloroethylene, also known as perchloroethylene, PERC or PCE, is a nonflammable, colorless chemical that exists as a liquid at room temperature.  PCE is and was widely used in dry cleaning operations.  Like its cousin trichloroethylene (“TCE”), PCE is a potent solvent and is used to dry clean fabrics and to degrease metal parts.  PCE […]

What is Trichloroethylene (TCE)?

Trichloroethylene, commonly referred to as TCE, is a colorless, nonflammable chemical compound with a sweet odor.  Imperial Chemical Industries invented TCE in Britain in the early 20th century. TCE was initially marketed for use as an anesthetic to replace chloroform, which was believed to be more toxic, and ether, which had an unpleasant smell. TCE soon found […]

Proposition 65 Compliance Deadline Approaching

We are quickly approaching the August 30, 2018 effective date for the new regulations under California’s Proposition 65. These new regulations include specific warnings for certain types of products and industries as well as new warning requirements for Internet sales. The list of substances regulated by Proposition 65 currently contains over 900 chemicals used in […]

Environmental Law Practice CLEs Now Available On Demand

MN CLE Webinar series “Environmental Law for Business and Real Estate Lawyers” now available as CLE’s On Demand. Webcasts include: 1) Environmental Law Basics, 2) Due Diligence in Business and Real Estate Transactions, 3) Focus – Soil Vapor Intrusion and 4) Complying With Environmental Laws in the Era of Trump.

MPCA Enforcement Update: Construction Stormwater and Air Quality Violations Top State Concerns

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) recently announced that in the Second Quarter of 2018 it had concluded 52 enforcement cases where the MPCA collected a total of just over $366,000 in civil penalties for alleged violations. The MPCA compiles lists of current and past enforcement action summaries on its website at: . In its […]

California’s Proposition 65: New Notices Required in August 2018

California’s Proposition 65, also known as the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Environment Act of 1986, is a broad environmental consumer protection measure that was enacted into law that year by California’s citizens. Proposition 65 requires businesses to provide “clear and reasonable” warnings when their products expose Californian consumers to certain chemicals known to cause […]

Enforcement Focus: Supercell Storms Often Lead to Civil Penalties for Construction Contractors

As we head into summer in Minnesota, we all need to be prepared for unpredictable and sudden rainfall, especially “Supercell” thunderstorm events. Unfortunately, for those in the construction industry big rains can easily overwhelm the best engineered stormwater controls. Stormwater flows can quickly move off a construction site into public waters where they can quickly create […]

Radon: What You Can’t See Can Hurt You

With the housing market preparing to pick up this spring and summer, it is important for residential buyers and sellers to understand their rights and obligations regarding radon disclosures. The Minnesota Department of Health (“MDH”) maintains that 2 in 5 homes in the State have dangerous levels of radon. MDH warns that properties in 78% […]

Minnesota Settles PFC Case Against 3M

The State of Minnesota’s claims for natural resource damages (NRD) resulting from 3M’s past disposal of perfluorochemicals (PFCs) was settled on the eve of trial. 3M has agreed to pay $850 million. Settlement proceeds will be dedicated to addressing impaired water supplies, water sustainability projects and natural resource restoration projects in the East Metro are of the Minneapolis St. Paul area.