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2012-03-20 Complaint (Filed) - Village of Roxana v Shell Oil Company, Et Al

2012-03-20 Complaint (Filed) - Village of Roxana v Shell Oil Company, Et Al

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Published by: St. Louis Public Radio on Mar 20, 2012
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08/05/2014

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INTHECIRCUITCOURTFORTHETHIRDJUDICIALCIRCUITMADISONCOUNTY,ILLINOISVILLAGEOFROXANA,ILLINOIS,aMunicipalCorporation,Plaintiff,
v.
SHELLOILCO:MPANY,EQUILONENTERPRISES,LLCd/b/aShellOilProducts,US,aCorporation,CONOCOPHILLIPSCOMPANY,WRBREFININGLP,CONOCOPHILLIPSWRBPARTNERLLC,andCENOVUSGPCOLLC,Defendants.
COMPLAINT
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JuryTrialDemandedNowcomesthePlaintiff,VILLAGEOFROXANA,ILLINOIS,byitscounsel,andcomplainingoftheDefendantsSHELLOILCOMPANY;EQUILONENTERPRISES,LLC,d/b/aShellOilProducts,US;CONOCOPHILLIPSCOMPANY;WRBREFINING
LPi
CONOCOPHILLIPSWRBPARTNERLLC;andCENOVUSGPCOLLC,foritscauseofactionstates:
INTRODUCTION
1.ThisisanactionbroughtbytheVillageofRoxana,Illinois("Roxana"orthe"Village"),seekingcompensationforenvironmentalpollutioncausedbytheDefendantsandadeclaratoryjudgmentofDefendants'responsibilityundertheIllinoisWaterPollutantDischargeAct,
415
ILCS
25/0.01
etseq.
2.Roxana,locatedinMadisonCounty,Illinois,isavillageofapproximately1,500people,with655households,and436familiesresidinginit.TheVillageencompassesapproximately6.8squaremiles.AmajorityofthelandinRoxanaistakenupbytheWoodRiveroilrefinery,pollutionfromwhichisthesubjectofthisaction.TheWoodRiveroilrefinery,alongwithitsassociatedpipelines,isreferredtohereafter
CaseNo._,Pagelof37
 
asthe"Refinery."3.Theconductcomplained
of
inthisComplaintconsistsoftrespass,nuisance,unjustenrichment,andwaterpollutionresultingfromreleasesofbenzene,volatileorganiccompounds,andotherhydrocarbonstothewater,land,andairintheVillagebyDefendantswhomanufactured,stored,andtransportedbenzeneandotherhydrocarbonsattheRefineryanditsassociatedpipelinesfrom1918throughpresentdate.4.Contantinationofthegroundwaterhasoccurredastheresultofreleasesandspillsofpetroleumproductsfromleakingpipesandstoragetanks,transferofproduct,equipmentfailures,andruptures,aswellasfromtheleachingofcompoundsfromcontaminatedsoilsandsedimentsorinfiltrationfromsurfacewaterimpoundments.Theimpactofon-sitewastedisposalactivitieshascontributedtogroundwatercontamination.5.BecauseoftheextensiveuseofgroundwaterintheareaincludingbytheoperatorsoftheRefinery,thevulnerablenatureofthelocalgroundwaterresource,andthecloseproximityofwellstoareasofcontantination,drinkingwaterinRoxanaispotentiallyatrisk.Moreover,volatileproducts
in
groundwaterhavepenetratedintohomesthroughseepage,cracks,ordrains,andresultinhighcontaminantconcentrationsinindoorair.6.Surfacewatercontaminationhasoccurredastheresultofspillsandotherreleasesaswellasthroughtheplanneddischargeoftreatedanduntreatedwastewatertoreceivingstreams,includingtheCahokiaDiversionChannelandtheMississippiRiver.7.Soilcontaminationexistsastheresultofspillsandleaks,movementofcontantinatedsoilastheresultofsurfacerunoff,andthesettling-outofcontaminateddusts.Spillsandsurfacerunoffmayhavecontantinatedsoilaccessibletothepublic.Contantinationofthefoodchainisapossibilitythroughsurfacedepositionofairborne
CaseNo._
,Page2of37
 
contaminants.8.Releaseshavealsoresultedinairborneemissionsasaresultofdirectreleasestotheair,volatilizationfromcontaminatedsoilsandwater,andentrainmentfromcontaminatedsoilsasairbornedusts.Outdoorairhasshownhighcontaminantconcentrations.9.AlargenumberofchemicalsarereleasedtotheairasaresultoftheRefinery'sday-to-dayoperations.Thesesubstancesincludearomaticsolvents,chlorinatedsolvents,alcoholsandethers,acids,phenolics,polynucleararomatichydrocarbons,aliphatichydrocarbons,aldehydes,corrosives,metals,andothermiscellaneouscompounds.10.ThecurrentoperatoroftheRefinerycontinuestoconductitsoperationsoastoreleasethesesubstancesinexcessivelevelsintotheairoftheVillageofRoxana,exposinginhabitants,workers,andvisitorstothenuisanceandmechanicalirritanteffectsofthesechemicals.Insomeindividuals,repeatedexposuretothesesubstancesmaycontributetodustoverloadingofthelungs.Theveryyoung,theelderly,orthosewithpre-existingrespiratoryconditionsareatthegreatestriskforthishazard.
THEPARTIES
11.PlaintiffRoxanaisamunicipalityincorporatedunderthelawsoftheStateofillinoiswithitsplaceofgovernmentalactivitywithintheStateofIllinois.TheVillageistheownerofcertainpropertywithintheVillagelimits.12.DefendantShellOilCompany("ShellOil")isacorporationorganizedandexistingunderthelawsoftheStateofDelawarewithitsprincipalplaceofbusinessintheStateofTexas.Atvarioustimesrelevanttotheclaimsassertedherein,ShellOilownedand/oroperatedtheRefinery(includingitspipelinesorcertainofitspipelines).13.DefendantEquilonEnterprises,LLC
("Equilon")
d/b/aShellOilProductsUS("SOPUS")isacompanyorganizedandexistingunderthelawsoftheStateofDelawarewithitsprincipalplaceofbusinessintheStateofTexas.Equilonisa
CaseNo._
,Page30f37

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