CTS Corp. Loses Lawsuit Against EPA



(ASHEVILLE- July 08, 2014) The D.C. Court of Appeals has ruled against CTS Corporation, deciding that the CTS of Asheville Superfund site must remain on the EPA’s Superfund inventory despite the company’s objections. CTS Corporation, which ran its Asheville facility from 1959 until 1986, sued the EPA in an effort to remove the contaminated site from Superfund. Finding that the site is indeed heavily polluted with carcinogens such as trichloroethylene (TCE), the court’s ruling in favor of the EPA will hugely benefit the Asheville community that is afflicted by CTS Corporation’s pollution.

 Claiming that CTS’s arguments amounted to “little more than methodological nit-picking,” the Court rejected CTS’s attempt to evade responsibility for its own contamination. “Each of CTS’s objections,” the court stated, “is without merit, forfeited, or impermissibly based on extra-record evidence.” In addition, the Court’s decision bolsters the EPA’s scientific assessment of the site, clearing the way for cleanup.

CTS Smackdown

 In large part, the EPA prevailed because of its rigorous on-site testing, which asserted CTS Corporation squarely liable for the pollution. According to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, the CTS site “can significantly impact public health” in South Asheville.

 “This is a great decision for the residents around the plant and for EPA,” Julie Mayfield, executive director of the Western North Carolina Alliance (WNCA), said in a statement. “CTS now has no shield left to hide behind, so hopefully they will change their approach and now work aggressively to complete the investigation and begin cleaning up the site.”

 POWER praises the court’s decision, as it will encourage EPA to secure clean water, air, and land for residents surrounding the CTS site. In light of the evacuation of thirteen residents near the site in June, it is imperative that EPA halt the exposure of residents to carcinogens such as trichloroethylene (TCE). With the CTS site’s placement on the Superfund list secure, EPA should now dedicate its resources towards comprehensive source removal, such that residents’ exposure to TCE is ended with all the urgency it demands.

To read the Asheville Citizen-Times article, click here.

To read the Court’s opinion, click here.