CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A Harrison County judge has approved a $150 million lawsuit settlement that requires DuPont Co. to clean up contamination of the community of Spelter and fund a program to test residents for any illnesses the pollution might have caused.
Circuit Judge Thomas A. Bedell issued an order Tuesday to approve the deal, which was tentatively reached in November and was the subject of a court hearing last week.
The judge noted the settlement ends a long battle in his courtroom, in federal court and before the state Supreme Court of Appeals.
"There have been many battles fought by the parties and both sides have had victories," Bedell wrote.
"However, winning a battle or a skirmish does not end the war," the judge wrote. "The potential for lengthy future conflict still looms on the horizon, and, without this settlement, this war is not over."
The settlement ends the need for another, Supreme Court-ordered trial over whether residents filed their suit within legal time limits. That trial had been set for March 2011.