Mosaic Co. Phosphate Mining Contamination of Florida Land Class Action

The complaint for this class action alleges, first, that the Mosaic Company contaminated Polk County, Florida land with its phosphate mining and other actions; and second, that Yes Companies WFC, LLC and CHC VI, Ltd., the current owners of the land, leased lots to people without disclosing the land was contaminated.

According to the complaint, Mosaic strip-mined the areas of Angler’s Green and Paradise Lakes, “improperly managed and disposed of radioactive mining wasters, polluting the lands…” This land is termed the Class Area within the complaint.

“Under Florida law,” the complaint says, “mining companies are required to restore former mining lands in a manner that returns the land to its original condition prior to mining, mining waste disposal or mining operations.”

However, the complaint alleges that Mosaic did not do this: “In unreleased internal agency documents, government scientists noted with significant concern that the use of phosphate mining slag as fill material has resulted in contaminated property with elevated concentrations of [] decay products of uranium, including radium-226, in the lands that were formerly mined” and in the Class Area’s soil.

The complaint alleges that the radium-226 and other substances produce gamma radiation that can increase human risks of cancer, including leukemia, lymphoma, and thyroid cancer. Since the half-life of radium-226 is 1,600 years, the risk will not disappear anytime soon and remediation is required. Also, the decay of radium creates radon, a radioactive gas that can increase the risk of lung cancer, the complaint says.

The complaint claims that “while structures such as concrete foundations may degrade or decrease exposure levels within a structure, homes in the Class Area do not contain significant shielding or foundations and thus these unmitigated levels of gamma radiation create unacceptable exposures to residents and children both inside and around the property” in the area.

When Mosaic sold the land for development, the complaint claims it was “foreseeable” that the land would be used to build homes. It gave no warning, through deed restrictions or otherwise, of the dangers this might pose. The companies that bought the land also did not disclose to would-be residents that the land had not been properly remediated and might pose dangers to them.

Two classes and two subclasses have been defined for this action.

The Property Damage Class is any and all persons who own homes in the Angler’s Green and Paradise Lakes communities in Polk County, Florida.

The two subclasses for this class are the Paradise Lakes Property Damage Subclass and the Angler’s Green Property Damage Subclass.

The Medical Monitoring Class is all persons who ever lived on property within the Class Area for a minimum of four years.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Environmental, Hazard

Most Recent Case Event

Mosaic Co. Phosphate Mining Contamination of Florida Land Complaint

May 5, 2020

The complaint for this class action alleges, first, that the Mosaic Company contaminated Polk County, Florida land with its phosphate mining and other actions; and second, that Yes Companies WFC, LLC and CHC VI, Ltd., the current owners of the land, leased lots to people without disclosing the land was contaminated.

Mosaic Co. Phosphate Mining Contamination of Florida Land Complaint

Case Event History

Mosaic Co. Phosphate Mining Contamination of Florida Land Complaint

May 5, 2020

The complaint for this class action alleges, first, that the Mosaic Company contaminated Polk County, Florida land with its phosphate mining and other actions; and second, that Yes Companies WFC, LLC and CHC VI, Ltd., the current owners of the land, leased lots to people without disclosing the land was contaminated.

Mosaic Co. Phosphate Mining Contamination of Florida Land Complaint
Tags: Cancer Risk, Contaminated with Harmful Substances, Environmental Contamination, Radiation