Anacostia Riverkeeper (ARK) celebrates Attorney General Schwalb, his staff, and colleagues in the District Department of Energy and Environment(DOEE) on the $57 million settlement with Pepco and Exelon for toxic contamination of the Anacostia River as well as the District’s soil and groundwater. This settlement is one more excellent step taken by the District to rectify the history of environmental injustice on the Anacostia River, and move toward the goal of environmental justice for everyone who lives, works, and plays in our watershed.
Anacostia Riverkeeper was involved in the initial lawsuit against Pepco in 2011 and has remained an active member of the Pepco Benning Rd Community Advisory Group (CAG) since 2012, attending monthly meetings for nearly twelve years now. In 2015, Anacostia Riverkeeper filed a complaint against Pepco for NPDES violations at their Benning Rd location with metals leaving their site from an additional outfall. Through our involvement in the CAG we have witnessed the schedule for the Benning Rd site’s remedial investigation and feasibility study slip at nearly every stage, now being many years past the original schedule with delays continuing to pile up.
We applaud Pepco for being the first polluter of the river to formally take responsibility in this way, and we hope the other polluters follow suit without the District having to spend public dollars pursuing them in court. We hope the addendum to the consent decree for the Benning Rd site (originally filed in 2011) will stop any further slipping of the schedule there.
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