MARINETTE, Wis. (WFRV) – A civil environmental enforcement lawsuit was filed against two companies for their alleged violations of hazardous substance spills law related to PFAS discharges in Marinette.

The Wisconsin Department of Justice says that Johnson Controls, Inc. (JCI) and Tyco Fire Products violated Wisconsin’s spills law when they didn’t notify the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources of a PFAS discharge. They also allegedly failed to remediate PFAS near the Fire Technology Center in Marinette.

“When companies contaminate our water, they must fully remediate the harm they’ve caused. Every Wisconsinite should be able to rely on the safety of the water they drink. The Wisconsin Department of Justice is committed to protecting the public and holding accountable those who endanger the health of Wisconsinites,” said Kaul.

PFAS are a group of human-made chemicals that are used in multiple products. They were allegedly discharged to the water, land and air from using firefighting foam during training and testing at the Fire Technology Center.

The State is looking for a monetary penalty from JCI and Tyco for their violations of the law.

Tyco recently released a statement regarding the lawsuit, saying, “Although Tyco does not comment on pending litigation, we stand behind the years of work and considerable resources we have invested in investigating and remediating PFAS related to historic operations at our Fire Technology Center (FTC) in Marinette. 

We continue to build on the progress we have made to address these issues in our community, including offering bottled water and in-home filtration systems to all households in the Town of Peshtigo whose private wells were potentially impacted by PFAS from the FTC.  Construction of a state-of-the-art Groundwater Extraction & Treatment System (GETS) that will treat 95% of the PFAS in area groundwater is also nearly complete and scheduled to begin operations by summer 2022.  Tyco is also completing the removal of soils with aggregated PFAS from the FTC in the coming months.