By  on April 15, 2009

Fiber and chemical producer Invista has agreed to pay an estimated $500 million to correct environmental violations at 12 plants and an additional $1.7 million civil penalty.

The company said Tuesday that it reached the settlement with the Environmental Protection Agency and other government regulators on the offenses in federal court in Wilmington, Del. Invista disclosed more than 680 violations of federal regulations such as the Clean Air Act shortly after DuPont spun it off to Wichita, Kan.-based Koch Industries Inc. in a $4.2 billion sale in 2004.

A company spokeswoman said Tuesday that two of the plants, in Seaford, Del., and Camden, S.C., manufacture fibers.

In a lawsuit filed in March 2008 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, Invista alleged that Wilmington-based DuPont knew of safety and environmental violations but did not disclose them before the sale. It is seeking no less than $800 million in damages and a court order requiring DuPont to fulfill contractual obligations.

Invista said it has corrected the majority of its noncompliances, but that the settlement outlines remedies, such as additional environmental controls, for about 50 remaining infractions. The South Carolina and Delaware plants are among those that will require further action.

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