Thursday April 18, 2024

Courthouse News Service

A federal judge denied summary judgment to a California nonprofit that accuses a solid waste facility in Butte County of allowing contaminants to seep out of its facility and into a wetland preserve that leads to a Sacramento River tributary during a major rainstorm.

Nonprofit California Open Lands maintains a wetland preserve in Butte County that sits near the Neal Road Recycling and Waste Facility, operated by the Butte County Department of Public Works. The devastating Camp Fire damaged the facility in November 2018, and in February 2019 a rainstorm inundated the area.

The plaintiffs claim the storm caused leachate from the facility to seep into a stormwater basin and into a ditch that flowed to the plaintiff’s wetland preserve.  The stormwater then flowed out of the preserve into an unnamed creek, then into Hamlin Slough — a tributary of Butte Creek which is itself a tributary of the Sacramento River and the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. 

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