Costco To Pay $3.6M To Settle Environmental Violations Lawsuit

OAKLAND (CBS/AP) — Retail giant Costco will pay $3.6 million for alleged environmental violations under a settlement with the district attorneys of more than two dozen California counties.

An Oakland judge approved the settlement on Friday. It stems from a civil case brought against the company by the district attorneys, who alleged that Costco violated state laws for the safe storage, handling and disposal of hazardous waste, including pharmaceutical and pharmacy waste.

Prosecutors say the violations first came to light in San Joaquin County, but occurred over a five-year period from 2007 to 2012 at Costco stores and distribution centers across the state.

The $3.6 million settlement includes civil penalties, costs and funds for environmental projects.

Prosecutors say Costco officials were cooperative and quickly came into compliance with regulations.

A call to the company on Monday was not immediately returned.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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