Pollution Violated Clean Air Act
COVINGTON, KY -- October 11, 2002 -- A Kentucky federal district court judge ordered Gallatin Steel Company and Harsco Corporation to halt pollution from their steel mill and slag dumping and processing plant in the state (Ellis v. Gallatin Steel Co., CV 99-242; Brashear v. Harsco, CV 00-263). The extreme dust and numerous explosions at these sites had become a nuisance that violated the Clean Air Act and led to the court's decision to grant an injunction against the companies.
Acting "willfully, wantonly, and oppressively," Gallatin Steel and Harsco had followed a "scorched-earth defense policy, contesting every procedural and substantive point," according to the court. They were required to pay $750,000 in punitive damages plus damages for loss of property value (amount to be determined) to four Kentucky residents.
The court also decided to appoint a special master, who will ensure that Gallatin Steel and Harsco comply with the terms of the injunction. The companies will bear the cost of hiring this expert.
Public Justice, a nonprofit national public interest law firm, represented the plaintiffs in the Gallatin Steel and Harsco cases. Brayton Purcell proudly supports the work of this group. Alan R. Brayton, the firm's founding and senior partner, is Secretary of Public Justice and serves on the Executive Committee of its Board of Directors.