You are now in California and the U.S. Media Coverage category.

Jury Awards Atwater $63 Million In Groundwater Pollution Suit Against Oil Giant Shell

A jury has ordered Shell Oil Company to pay the City of Atwater a total of $63 million in damages in a groundwater pollution suit.

The decision, reached Friday after a four-month trial in Merced County Superior Court, awarded Atwater $53 million in compensatory damages and $10 million in punitive damages, according to a news release from the city.

The lawsuit stemmed from the highly toxic chemical 1,2,3-Trichloropropane (TCP), which can pose a risk to public health and can contaminate drinking water.

Ornamental Horticulture Groundbreaking Cultivates Career Opportunities

With the turn of 11 gleaming shovels, groundbreaking took place on August 22 for a $16.7 million project to renovate and improve indoor and outdoor classrooms and facilities for Cuyamaca College’s Ornamental Horticulture program. Thousands of students have graduated from the program since its launch in 1980. Many have gone on to careers in landscape design and sustainable landscaping, irrigation technology and turf management. The renovation will allow the program to provide a hands-on training experience reflecting current industry standards. “We are a career technical education discipline and we strive to help students get jobs, so it is very important that we are able to replicate what’s currently used in industry,” said Leah Rottke, program coordinator for the horticulture program.

PFAS Toxins Found In Drinking Water Throughout Southern California

Wells of nearly two dozen Southern California water agencies have reportable levels of PFAS, a chemical family increasingly linked to cancer, liver and kidney damage, thyroid disease, high cholesterol, low fertility, low birth weight and ulcerative colitis. Six of those agencies have shut down wells in the past year because of the presence of those chemicals and two more plan closures, an investigation by the Southern California News Group found. The state only this year began ordering testing for the chemicals, and a state law requiring that customers be notified about the presence of those chemicals won’t kick in until next year.

Celebrate National Water Quality Month

As the summer heat scorches Southern California, many residents may be cooling off by enjoying a swim in their backyard or community pool, a run through the sprinklers or a refreshing drink of water. Most people take their easy and uninterrupted access to water for granted without realizing how water agencies here and across the nation work tirelessly to provide their customers with a reliable supply of safe and clean water each and every day. August is National Water Quality Month, which is a good time to stop and think about how communities are provided safe, clean water whenever they need it and how they can help protect local water sources.