Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Cloudy 65° Cloudy
News >  Spokane

Federal trial in Spokane’s pollution case against Monsanto delayed until July

The outflow of treated water into the Spokane River at the Riverside Park Water Reclamation Facility is seen in this April 2016 photo. The city of Spokane is suing agrochemical giant Monsanto, alleging the company manufactured hazardous chemicals for decades that flowed into the river. (Jesse Tinsley / The Spokesman-Review)
The outflow of treated water into the Spokane River at the Riverside Park Water Reclamation Facility is seen in this April 2016 photo. The city of Spokane is suing agrochemical giant Monsanto, alleging the company manufactured hazardous chemicals for decades that flowed into the river. (Jesse Tinsley / The Spokesman-Review)

A federal jury trial in the city of Spokane’s case against agrochemical giant Monsanto has been delayed again, until July.

U.S. District Court Judge Salvador Mendoza pushed a trial date into the summer on Monday. The trial had been scheduled to begin in Richland on April 13.

Spokane sued Monsanto in 2015, alleging the company commercially produced polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs, for decades, despite knowing that they were hazardous. The chemical spilled into the Spokane River through stormwater runoff, Spokane contends, and the city is seeking damages totaling $283 million to cover cleanup costs and monitoring efforts.

Monsanto has countered that the city has not constructed an adequate sewer system to prevent discharges into the Spokane River and that it is not responsible for covering the city’s costs to build one, among other arguments.

The trial is scheduled to last six weeks. Both the city and Monsanto have filed motions requesting the case be decided in their favor before that happens, but Mendoza is not expected to rule on those motions until June.

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Active Person

Subscribe now to get breaking news alerts in your email inbox

Get breaking news delivered to your inbox as it happens.