After nearly six years of litigation with the Southern California Gas Company and its parent company, Sempara Energy, In 2015, more than 35,000 victims at the Aliso Canyon Natural Gas Storage will pay up to $ 1.8 billion to settle their claims, attorneys announced today.
In a Los Angeles High Court lawsuit, one of the plaintiffs’ natural gas storage wells failed and caused an uncontrolled release of nearly 100,000 tons of methane and other substances into the atmosphere within 118 days, causing personal injury and property damage. The Alison Canyon remains the largest natural gas leak in American history.
Sempara and Sokalgas denied the allegations. Proponents of her case have been working to make the actual transcript of this statement available online.
Plaintiffs’ attorneys from several law firms issued a statement regarding the settlement.
“Our goal is always to bring justice to the men, women and children who have lost in Sokalgas,” the statement said. “This settlement, and the many sanctions imposed by the court, are responsible for the Aliso Canyon bombing and their repeated misdemeanors in this dispute.
Sokalgas also announced that the company will pay an estimated $ 1.1 billion in taxes this month and that settlement costs, including three agreements, will not be borne by consumers.
“These agreements are an important milestone that will help the community and our company work to put this difficult chapter behind us,” said Scott Dreri, CEO of Socals.
In the years since its demise, SoCalGas has worked with our supervisors, technicians, and neighbors to increase our engagement with all of our underground storage facilities and the community. As a result, our storage facilities are overseen by regulators and professionals who call for the highest security standards in the country.
During the lawsuit, SoCalGas, Sempra Energy and their lawyers were fined more than $ 5.7 million by Morgan, Lewis and Bocchius LLP, one of the largest acquisition sanctions in California history, according to the plaintiffs’ attorneys.
According to the plaintiffs’ attorneys, the trial court and its advisers erroneously identified more than 150,000 documents as “deliberate, deliberate, and misleading.”
In September 2016, SoCalGas did not immediately file a complaint for a felony because it did not immediately report the gas leak, which began on October 23, 2015 and was not scheduled for mid-February 2016. Air pollution and two additional counts did not report the release of hazardous materials – as part of the deal.
Under a settlement agreement with the prosecutor for $ 4 million, Solgas was forced to install and maintain an infrared methane monitoring system at the Aliso Canyon station – estimated at $ 1.2 million to $ 1.5 million – and to hire a foreign company to test and verify that. The monitoring system and real-time pressure regulators on each gas well are working properly.
The agreement also called for the hiring of half a dozen full-time workers to operate and maintain the new sewer system 24 hours a day at a cost of about $ 2.25 million over three years.
Under the agreement, the company is required to review and adopt new reporting policies for the elimination of hazardous and hazardous materials and to provide training courses on all notification procedures for utility workers in Los Angeles. Angeles County.
Health risks from the gas leak Thousands of residents have complained of health issues due to exposure to gasoline, uranium, crude oil and other cancer-causing chemicals. .