CTS Files Complaint
The EPA is denying claims that it intentionally ignored evidence at a toxic Superfund site in south Asheville. The new accusations are being made by CTS.
Attorney's for CTS filed a 38 page appeal Wednesday night. They claim the EPA was hiding data so it could put the former CTS on a high priority list. Now CTS officials are demanding the site be removed from the national priorities list or "NPL." When a site is placed on the NPL, the EPA says it poses a serious health risk to residents and they devise a clean up plan and then force the contaminator to pay for it.
Until it closed it's south Asheville location, CTS used the toxic chemical TCE to clean electric components at the plant. CTS says the EPA placed the site on the NPL because of contamination it found in wells at the Oak subdivision about a mile from CTS and ignored evidence that the Oaks contamination was likely caused by septic tank systems.
According to CTS officials, chlorinated solvents, like TCE, are used to clean and treat septic tank system and the EPA failed by not testing them.
If CTS wins this legal challenge and the site is removed from the NPL, Tate McQueen says it would be an egregious act of injustice.
"Does CTS have a case? They have a case of selective memory. Yes, they're taking advantage of EPA's previous history of the site. Because they know the EPA didn't handle the site as the regulator and they used that as leverage all along so this is more of the same," said McQueen.
CTS says it could lose a lot of money by remaining on the NPL. In court documents, the corporation claims it could incur significant financial loss including damage to it's business reputation and increased probability of a costly clean up. If removed from the list though, the state and tax payers would be stuck with clean up costs of the CTS site.
The court will hear oral arguments from both sides before deciding what action to take.