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BASF/Shell settle compensation to Brazil workers

BASF and Shell have finalised a deal with former Shell workers for damages to those workers who suffered contamination at a pesticide plant in Brazil as far back as the 1970s, official news agency Agencia Brasil reports. The case was closed at the Superior Employment Tribunal in Brasilia earlier this month. The companies will pay a total of R$200 million (US$100 million at the current rate) for collective and moral damages, and further payments for individual damages including healthcare costs to claimants and families proportionate to their length of employment. A deal was agreed last month after negotiations stretching back to 2007 ( Agrow No 660, p 19). The settlement followed an audit from the public prosecutor’s office. The facility in Paulinia produced pesticides from 1974 to 2002. It contaminated soil with insecticides, such as aldrin, endrin and dieldrin. The former Shell plant was subsequently taken over by BASF as part of its acquisition of Cyanamid, which had acquired the plant from Shell in 1993 ( Agrow No 191, p 1).

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