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Benson Metal again target of Clean Water Act lawsuit

Keywords: Tags  scrap metal, Benson Metal, Riverkeeper, Clean Water Act, Lisa Gordon

PITTSBURGH — Benson Metal Corp. is being sued by an environmental group for allegedly violating the federal Clean Water Act less than a year after it settled similar pollution concerns with state regulators.

Riverkeeper Inc. is accusing the Brooklyn, N.Y.-based scrap company of unlawfully discharging pollutants into a local waterway.

An attorney for Ossining, N.Y.-based Riverkeeper said that the group filed the lawsuit because its concerns are different from those addressed by the state lawsuit.

In December, Benson agreed to pay $85,000 to settle water pollution litigation launched by the state attorney general and the state Department of Environmental Conservation (, Dec. 5).

Those allegations stemmed from an unexpected mishap when a dock collapsed at the facility, a Benson spokesman said. Construction efforts to remedy the situation are under way and the company hopes to resolve the legal issue with the environmental group.

Riverkeeper is asking the court to force the recycler to gain compliance and is seeking fines of $32,500 per day per violation between March 15, 2004, and Jan. 12, 2009, and $37,500 per day for each subsequent violation.

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