Precedent-Setting Lawsuit Turns LA Water Polluter into Industry Champion

Davis Wire Agrees to Zero Discharge in Settlement with LA Waterkeeper

LOS ANGELES, July 7, 2017—On June 30, US District Court Judge Philip S. Gutierrez issued an order entering the consent decree between Los Angeles Waterkeeper (LAW) and Davis Wire Corporation. LAW filed a lawsuit against the wire drawing and manufacturing facility in 2016 for exceeding pollutant allowances in the facility’s stormwater discharge.

According to the precedent-setting agreement, Davis Wire will no longer discharge any stormwater from its 35-acre Irwindale facility. The company’s commitment to capturing all of its stormwater on-site, effectively achieving ‘zero discharge’, far exceeds Industrial Permit requirements.

“It takes a forward-thinking company like Davis Wire to take such a leadership role on environmental responsibility,” said Bruce Reznik, Executive Director of Los Angeles Waterkeeper. “Committing to zero discharge distinguishes Davis Wire as an industry champion and can propel the region’s industrial facilities into a new era of responsible stormwater management.”

Industrial stormwater pollution is one of the most pervasive and challenging sources of contamination to Los Angeles waterways, largely as a result of the ubiquitous nature of these facilities. There are nearly 3,000 permitted industrial facilities throughout LA County, including scrapyards, auto dismantling facilities and a host of other industrial sites. These sites discharge a number of toxic pollutants into local waterways, such as the San Gabriel and Los Angeles rivers, which eventually empty into the ocean.

For nearly a quarter-century, LAW has fought to address industrial stormwater pollution, and the organization’s efforts have led to dozens of facilities reducing stormwater discharges from their sites. This has significantly mitigated copper, zinc, lead and other pollutants from reaching the region’s rivers, creeks and coastal waterways. But there is much more work to be done.

“We work all over California to bring industrial facilities to the table and ensure their sites are in compliance with the Clean Water Act,” said Drevet Hunt, Partner at Lawyers for Clean Water, which served as lead counsel with LAW on this case. “This settlement with Davis Wire Corporation achieves one of the most comprehensive solutions to stormwater pollution I’ve seen throughout the state.”

In addition to implementing 100% on-site stormwater capture, Davis Wire will support additional environmental groups in the watershed that are working to lessen the impacts of industrial stormwater pollution in southern California.

“This groundbreaking progress with Davis Wire should serve as a model to the thousands of industrial polluters throughout LA County,” Reznik added. “It’s important for facilities to know that there’s a water watchdog closely monitoring pollution activity—but it’s equally important for them to know about the far-reaching benefits of sensible stormwater management.”

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Founded in 1993, Los Angeles Waterkeeper’s mission is to protect and restore Santa Monica Bay, San Pedro Bay and adjacent waters through enforcement, fieldwork and community action. For more information, please visit www.lawaterkeeper.org.

ABOUT LAWYERS FOR CLEAN WATER

Lawyers for Clean Water, Inc., represents environmental and community groups in litigation and administrative advocacy designed to advance environmental protection and enforcement of environmental laws. Lawyers for Clean Water provides legal services to organizations throughout the State of California, and beyond. For more information, visit www.lawyersforcleanwater.com.

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