Johnson Controls has agreed to pay $17.5 million to residents in Peshtigo, Wisconsin, whose water was contaminated by PFAS from firefighting foam that was mixed and tested at its Tyco Firefighting Technology Center in Marinette. Tyco Fire Products is a subsidiary of Johnson Controls.
The agreement provides that Tyco will pay up to $17.5 million to compensate Peshtigo residents who live within a defined area affected by PFAS from the FTC. The money is allocated to settle property and personal claims of those impacted by the presence of PFAS.
Tyco says it has been working for several years with environmental scientists and using state-of-the-art practices to identify the area impacted by PFAS from the FTC to “find permanent solutions.” In the meantime, to ensure clean drinking water, the company has provided bottled water and/or well point-of-entry systems for impacted households.
Tyco recently announced that it has identified a permanent solution for clean groundwater and surface water and is working with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to finalize the design and installation. The settlement does not affect or change this work or “Tyco’s commitment to fund a new water line to permanently provide clean drinking water to impacted residents in the Town of Peshtigo,” the company said in a statement.
An attorney representing the plaintiffs said the settlement is the first of its kind in a nationwide litigation, adding (via the Wisconsin State Journal) that it is a “huge milestone” for people harmed by fluorinated firefighting foam, known as AFFF.