Pollution Found Under Philadelphia Refinery Site
Residents of the Philadelphia neighborhood surrounding the Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES) refinery are expressing concerns after an environmental advocacy group detected dangerous chemicals in the area. Detected by researchers after a massive fire occurred at the location in June 2019, the presence of pollutants has residents worried about their health and safety.
Potential Exposure for Future Residents
Following last’s summer fire which caused significant structural damage to the refinery, the PES site was sold to Hilco Redevelopment Partners. This developer has announced plans to build a mixed-use development on the location of the former refinery. Area residents continue to express concerns that the land under the refinery site has been polluted and poses significant safety risks. During its operation, the PES refinery processed, stored, and shipped potentially toxic chemicals at the site.
Release of Dangerous Chemicals
Sunoco owned the refinery property until 2012 and has been working on cleanup at the site in partnership with the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and the Evergreen Resources Group. Over 10 potentially toxic chemicals were leaked or spilled out into the groundwater and area aquifers during Sunoco’s operation of the refinery. Sunoco has expressed its commitment to remediating pollution at the site.
Additional pollution occurred as some of these chemical compounds entered Philadelphia’s sewer system, which eventually released into the Delaware River. Contamination of groundwater sources remains a serious concern of state environmental groups as a portion of the Potomac-Raritan-Magothy aquifer is located under the refinery property and is a source of drinking water supplies.
According to an investigation conducted by the Environmental Integrity Project, one dangerous toxin found in the area is benzene. Its reported levels exceed state levels recommended for a non-residential property. Benzene has been linked to the development of anemia, failure of bone marrow to properly produce red blood cells, and damage to the immune system. Women can be especially vulnerable to developing chronic medical conditions after exposure to benzene, including irregular menstrual cycles and certain types of cancers.
Is Compensation Available for Individuals Exposed to Pollutants?
Individuals exposed to pollutants, including toxic chemicals, can suffer devastating physical injuries requiring years of medical treatment. Residents often spend thousands of dollars in testing and monitoring when they believe their property has been contaminated with pollutants such as benzene. Dealing with the effects of contaminated drinking water can be a financial nightmare for individuals moving or working in areas where exposure to pollutants has occurred. By filing a civil lawsuit against those parties responsible for releasing dangerous toxins into the environment, individuals may be able to obtain compensation.
Pennsylvania Environmental Lawyers at Williams Cedar Protect the Legal Rights of Individuals Exposed to Pollutants
If you developed a serious medical condition after being exposed to environmental contamination, you may be entitled to compensation. At Williams Cedar, our experienced Pennsylvania environmental lawyers stand by toxic exposure victims and their families as they seek to hold companies responsible for their actions. Our offices are located in Philadelphia and Haddonfield, New Jersey, and we represent individuals exposed to environmental contamination throughout Pennsylvania, South Jersey, and nationwide. To schedule a free consultation today, call us at 215-557-0099 or contact us online.