Drugstore dumps toxins

Rite Aid agrees to settlement for allegedly dumping toxic chemicals

Grocery and drugstore chain Rite Aid agreed to a multimillion-dollar settlement for allegedly dumping toxic chemicals from hundreds of its California locations.

Dozens of attorneys representing California cities and counties joined the suit, filed in September, which claimed that about 600 of the chain’s stores illegally dumped pesticides, bleach, and other toxins into landfills over a nearly seven-year period, according to The Sacramento Bee. The settlement requires Rite Aid to pay $9.4 million in civil penalties, nearly $2 million for environmental projects and $950,000 in attorneys’ fees, in addition to hiring employees to ensure compliance with environmental and safety regulations.

“We want Rite Aid to train its employees,” said Heidi D’Agostino, a senior enforcement officer at the Yolo County District Attorney’s Office. “Unfortunately, there’s nothing we can do to mitigate what’s clearly been disposed of, but they can rethink how they’re training people.”