Michigan Environmental Quality Department Sues Footwear Company over Chemical Contamination of Drinking Water

Wolverine World Wild, an American footwear manufacturer in Michigan has been sued by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, on Wednesday. The lawsuit is filed over an accusation of dumping the widely making chemical contamination into ground few decades ago, which are then seeped into pure drinking water.


According to the Department, the litigation of chemical contamination is necessary to compensate the Michigan Government for the past and future consequential costs and to lock response efforts into place. The lawsuit has been filed by the federal court, requesting an order, which declares that the hazardous waste disposed by Footwear Company based in Rockford, Michigan in the past, causes or may cause substantial and imminent harms to human health.

Nearly 1,200 wells from private residencies were tested for the chemical contamination in the north area of Grand Rapids, among which 78 contain certain amount of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), or more than the lifetime federal advisory amount of 70 parts per trillion.

Chemical contamination consisting of PFAS substances was the mainstream in the commercial applications such as Scotchgard which is used by Wolverine World Wild for its operations. Researchers are still unsure about how these substances affect human health when their certain levels get exposed typically in to food and water.

Heidi Grether, Director at the state Department of Environmental Quality said in a statement that, “The state of Michigan is committed to holding responsible parties responsible. We have filed this action today because we want to ensure that immediate and long-term solutions are confirmed by the courts.”

Share this post