Environmental Class Action Lawsuit: Coal Ash

Two big energy companies were recently named in a class action lawsuit: First Energy Corp. and NRG Energy, Inc. The suit also names a smaller, local contracting company too – Matt Canestrale Contracting Inc. Filed by the representative of a collection of residents of the town of Labelle in Fayette County, the suit seeks to hold companies liable for harm caused to residents from toxins produced from a nearby waste disposal site for coal ash.

Coal Ash Creates Health Problems for Those in Labelle

 As Napoli Shkolnik environmental attorney W. Steve Berman recently told the Herald-Standard, the coal processing plant was officially closed in 1994, but “waste continually seeps out from the site and travels onto residential property.” At that time, Matt Canestrale Contracting, Inc. (MCC) was contracted to perform reclamation of the site. However, MCC instead has been using the site as a waste disposal area for coal ash (since 1997), and plans to do so over the course of the next decade. Today, the site contains 40 million pounds of waste, slurry ponds, and unbelievable amounts of coal ash.

The Dangers of Coal Ash

Coal ash is toxic, and contains a number of heavy metals that are dangerous for human health and pollute the environment. To be sure, pollutants found in coal ash have been linked to:

  • Hypertension;
  • Respiratory complications;
  • Heart problems;
  • Brain damage;
  • Liver damage;
  • Nervous system complications;
  • Ulcers; and
  • Cancer.

Residents of Labelle say that some in the town have died of cancer already, and others are finding cancerous tumors on their bodies.

Your Right to Take Action

If you are the victim of environmental toxins that have endangered your health, you have the right to take action. Big companies that fail to take into account the wellbeing of the communities they are polluting should be held liable for the harm they cause. Contact our law offices today for a free consultation to learn more.