Michigan company sues 3M over chemicals

GRAND RAPIDS (AP) — A western Michigan-based footwear company has sued a chemical manufacturer linked to contaminated water detected at military bases and industrial sites.

Wolverine World Wide filed the federal lawsuit last Wednesday against 3M, alleging the Minnesota-based company concealed information about the potential environmental risks of chemicals in Scotchgard and other products. The companies are co-defendants in cases involving perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances, known as PFAS.

Rockford-based Wolverine, which disposed of PFAS-laden waste for years at a landfill, says it must defend a 3M “product” now considered “a waste.”

3M says it acted responsibly, adding it “will vigorously defend its environmental stewardship.”

In February, it agreed to pay Minnesota $850 million to settle a case alleging the manufacturer damaged natural resources and contaminated groundwater by disposing of chemicals.

Research shows PFAS poses health risks.