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3M Appeals Flemish Order That Would Increase PFAS Discharges from Zwijndrecht Facility
Company seeks fair and reasonable treatment to identify path forward.

3M today filed an appeal to the Flemish Council on Permitting Disputes regarding permit modifications announced on March 8, 2022, which, as written, would lead to greater discharges of PFAS from the Zwijndrecht site.

3M’s appeal challenges a specific provision of the permit that disrupts 3M’s ability to operate remedial technologies to address PFAS in groundwater and surface water.

The modified permit:

  • Includes language that directly conflicts with 3M’s existing legal obligation to operate onsite remedial actions as well as treatment of storm water before it enters the Scheldt River.
  • Unlike similar facilities in Flanders, the permit does not provide realistic timeframes for 3M to characterize its discharges or optimize remediation processes.

3M is not challenging reductions of the limits for the PFAS specifically identified in its permits. 3M has already put in place technology and processes to lower the discharge of certain PFAS, and the site’s current operations do not contribute to the presence of PFOS in the Zwijndrecht area. The company continues to support reduced discharge limits from its operations with appropriate control technology and time to achieve those limits.

3M has taken immediate steps to comply with the order. This has had a negative impact on 3M’s ability to provide critical products to the automotive, semiconductor, and data center markets globally. 3M will continue to seek ways to work with the authorities to resolve these issues.

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