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Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan
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May 4, 2018

ATTORNEY GENERAL MADIGAN PLANS TO FILE LAWSUIT CHALLENGING U.S. EPA RULE ALLOWING PROPOSED MASSIVE WISCONSIN FOXCONN PLANT TO POLLUTE AIR

Chicago — Attorney General Lisa Madigan today announced she plans to file a lawsuit challenging a recently issued rule by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that will allow Foxconn, an electronics manufacturing company slated for massive construction in Southeastern Wisconsin’s Racine County, to avoid installing stringent emission controls.

Madigan plans to file her lawsuit challenging the final rule in the Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit within 60 days of the final rule being published in the Federal Register. The rule, issued earlier this week on April 30, designates Racine County, future home of Foxconn’s $10 billion plant, as in “attainment,” meaning it does not need to meet stricter standards for controlling smog and air pollution despite indisputable pollution monitoring data showing Racine County exceeds ozone levels beyond the 70 parts per billion (ppb) limit. Racine County recorded average ozone levels of 74 ppb from 2015 through 2017. A non-attainment designation would require the plant to install the most stringent pollution control equipment.

“Despite its name, the Environmental Protection Agency now operates with total disregard for the quality of our air and water, and in this case, the U.S. EPA is putting a company’s profit ahead of our natural resources and the public’s health,” Madigan said. “I will file a lawsuit to protect the environment and people from the consequences of this unsupported decision.”

The lawsuit will be the second action Madigan has taken to abate the negative impacts that the proposed Foxconn site will have on the environment and people’s health. In March, Madigan submitted comments to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources expressing concern about Foxconn’s water use and how wastewater from the manufacturing plant will be treated.

Division Chief Matthew Dunn, Chicago Bureau Chief Elizabeth Wallace and Assistant Attorney General Daniel Rottenberg are handling this matter for Madigan’s Environmental Enforcement Division.

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