PITTSBURGH Camden Iron
& Metal Inc. is suing the former owners of its scrapyard in
Albany County, N.Y., in an effort to force them to pay for
environmental remediation efforts at the site.
Camden Iron & Metal filed
the suit against Anthony Dawson of Latham, N.Y., and Morris
Freedman of Woodstock, N.Y., under the Comprehensive
Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act
(Cercla), according to documents filed April 30 in U.S.
District Court in New York.
When Camden Iron & Metal
purchased the Green Island, N.Y., facility in 2010, Dawson and
Freedman signed an agreement stating that the new owner would
not be held liable for cleanup costs from previous activities
on the site, according to the filing.
The former owners used the site
as a salvage yard and an automobile recycling facility from
1973 to 2010, as well as a locomotive repair shop from 2000 to
2010, according to court documents. Petroleum and
polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) leached into the soil and
groundwater as a result of those activities, the lawsuit
In the 1980s, the New York State
Department of Environmental Conservation placed the property on
a registry of inactive hazardous waste disposal sites,
according to the suit. After two failed attempts to have the
property removed from the list, the operationthen named
R. Freedman & Son Inc.entered into a consent order in
1998. The facility entered into a second consent order in 2003
after allegedly failing to make good on the first one,
according to court documents.
Camden, N.J.-based Camden Iron
& Metal, a subsidiary of Warrington, England-based Eastern
Metal Recycling Ltd. (EMR), has incurred and will continue to
incur costs associated with the remediation of the 12-acre
facility, according to court documents. Otherwise, the company
faces penalties and state enforcement action.
The company told the court that
the former owners deny any responsibility. It is asking the
court to force the former owners to pay for completed, ongoing
and future remediation efforts. Camden Iron & Metal did not
provide an estimate of those costs.
Neither Dawson nor Freedman
could not be reached for comment.