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Alabama City Sued By Environmental Orgs. CWA Violations

Alabama City Sued By Environmental Orgs. CWA Violations

Coosa Riverkeeper was joined by other environmental groups. a complaintThe Water Works and Sewer Board in Gadsden have alleged that the defendants have committed numerous violations to the Clean Water Act (CWA) and their National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System(NPDES) permits issued under the CWA.

The plaintiffs include the following parties: Coosa Riverkeeper, a non-profit organization whose mission it is to restore and protect the ecological integrity of Coosa River by enforcement and community action; and The Center for Biological Diversity, a national nonprofit conservation group dedicated to the preservation of ecosystems. Advance Etowah is an organization that is not for profit and aims to bring together Etowah County. It provides information about the local government to encourage citizens to get involved in it. Our Children’s Earth Foundation is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to protecting the environment.

The plaintiffs stated that they represent supporters and members who have suffered personal injuries due to the alleged violations by the defendant of the Clean Water Act. The plaintiffs are members of the Gadsden community.

According to the complaint the defendant allowed the sanitary pipes to become corroded. Untreated sewage is now discharged from manholes, pipes and other infrastructure. These discharges are called Sanitary Sewer Overflows. The Board’s failure to adhere to its own NPDES has resulted in SSOs entering streets and homes as well as several bodies of water around Gadsden, according to the complaint.

The NPDES permits require that the defendant maintain sewer infrastructure, report accurately, often, and ensure that sewage polluting discharges do not affect water quality standards.

The plaintiffs sent a notice to the defendant on November 18, 2021. This was required by the CWA. The plaintiffs informed the defendant that they intended to sue them for alleged violations in their NPDES, Clean Water Act, and other laws. A copy of this letter also was sent to the Environment Protection Agency.

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The plaintiffs request that the defendant, who is in violation of the Clean Water Act be declared, be compelled to correct the city’s sewage infrastructure and maintain it properly. They also ask that the defendant report on its pollutant emissions as required by the NPDES permits. The plaintiffs seek to compel water quality standards violations to be stopped by the board. They also demand that the defendants pay civil penalties, restore impaired water quality, and the plaintiffs costs of litigation.

The plaintiffs are represented Knowles & Sullivan, LLC, Super Law Group, and Center for Biological Diversity.

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