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Twin Cities council to pay $1M in river pollution lawsuits

MINNEAPOLIS  — The Metropolitan Council in St. Paul has agreed to pay a manufacturing firm about $1 million to settle lawsuits over Mississippi River pollution.

The settlement Monday ends the lawsuits between 3M Co. and the council, a regional planning and policy-making board for the Twin Cities metro area. The council and company blamed each other for chemicals found in the river in 2007, The Pioneer Press reported.

The company manufactured chemicals called perfluorochemicals and legally dumped them in landfills up until the 1970s. Traces of the chemicals were later found in groundwater.

The Metropolitan Council also joined a lawsuit in 2011 filed by the Minnesota attorney general against 3M for damage to the environment from the chemicals, which were found in Minnesota rivers, lakes and groundwater.