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Environment and Energy

Legal settlement helps protect Salinas River from toxins

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A local salvage yard will work to keep toxins from flowing into the Salinas River under the terms of a settlement reached with two conservation groups. 

Paso Robles based A-1 Metals & Auto Salvage has agreed to tackle several clean up efforts as part of a case settlement brought forth by the Environmental Defense Center and The California Sportfishing Protection Alliance.

The groups say the facility was violating the Clean Water Act by releasing dangerous levels of contaminants including lead, copper and iron that leaked to the Salinas River.

Maggie Hall is a Staff Attorney for the Environmental Defense Center. She said the greatest outcome of the case is the basin the salvage yard will design to collect all its storm water.

"Whereas, before some of the rain that would come into contact with their site and hit pollution, that would go out into waterways," said Hall.

The settlement requires the company to pay $25,000 to the Rose Foundation for Communities. That money will contribute to a water restoration project for the Salinas River.