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December 13, 2011

PEAC Helps Protect Waterfowl Along the Bayou Meto River in Arkansas

PEAC sent a 60-day notice letter to the Remington Arms Company regarding toxic discharge into the Bayou Meto River in Arkansas.

The Bayou Meto River in Arkansas is a major tributary of the Arkansas River and one of the most significant waterfowl resources along the Mississippi Flyway, one of the four major North American bird migration flyways. On November 16, 2011, PEAC, on behalf of our client, the Sierra Club’s Arkansas Chapter, sent a 60-day notice letter to the Remington Arms Company informing the company of our client’s intent to sue for discharging high levels of lead, copper and fecal coliform into the Bayou Meto from its Lonoke, AR, ammunition manufacturing facility. View a copy of the notice letter.

In order to discharge its industrial wastewater into the Bayou Meto, Remington has a Clean Water Act permit, which contains strict limits on various pollutants in Remington’s discharge. The company’s monthly Discharge Monitoring Reports indicate that Remington has been violating its permit limits repeatedly for several years, especially for lead and copper. The Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ), which administers the Clean Water Act permit program in Arkansas, has sent the company 18 warning letters for its pollution in the last six years, including six letters in 2011. Nevertheless, the violations have continued and the pollution is ongoing.

The Sierra Club’s goal for the litigation is to protect and restore the water quality of the Bayou Meto by bringing Remington into compliance with its discharge permit and the Clean Water Act. Hank Bates of the law firm Carney Williams Bates Pulliam & Bowman, PLLC, in Little Rock will co-counsel the case with PEAC.