UPDATE: Keep Your Promises Takes Fight to DuPont Headquarters

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UPDATE 5/7/2015 3:30 PM

The Keep Your Promises group takes its fight against DuPont to the company's headquarters.

Thursday the group was in Wilmington, Delaware kicking off what it calls a week of actions leading up to DuPont's annual meeting.

The group claims DuPont has not provided documents showing how it will take responsibility for C-8 related issues once the Chemours company takes over.

But DuPont has told WTAP it does remain committed to fulfilling its obligations.

Keep Your Promises says it is circulating a petition demanding an end to what it calls DuPont's secrecy.

Update 4/29/2015 7:15 P.M.

Putting their feet to the fire.
The "Keep Your Promises" group now appeals to the CEO of DuPont.

In a letter to company chief Ellen Kullman, the group demands answers about the company's future commitment to those affected by the C8 chemical.

It's concern is how that will be affected by the planned spinoff of DuPont Washington Works performance chemicals division to the Chemours company.

" If Chemours gets it, we're concerned because we've seen other companies do this," says Joe Kiger, Advisory Board Member and Wood County resident. "They spin off into another company, they downsize, they go into stock options, downsize to the point of filing bankruptcy, and there goes your liability."

In a response, DuPont said: "DuPont and Chemours remain committed to fulfilling all its environmental and legal obligations that have been ongoing at its Washington Works facility in accordance with existing local, state and federal regulatory guidelines.”

UPDATE: 3/30/2015 5:36 PM

Keep Your Promises says Chemours will inherit the liabilities including the hundreds of millions of dollars owed to the Mid Ohio Valley residents contaminated by chemical c-8.

Keep Your Promises says they're left in the dark about how Chemours will handle those liabilities.

Keep Your Promises is demanding DuPont to release documents that show how they will address the environmental damages caused by their company.

In a press release from Keep Your Promises, it states, "DuPont has prepared documents including a separation agreement that specifies all of its environmental liabilities and how the liabilities will be transferred," and they say none of that information was ever reported.

The risk to us is the fact of not knowing. That's the biggest risk, and that of not knowing what they're going to do, i think that's not being fair to the community and that's a risk i think they don't want to take. it's not advising a community of what's going to happen and where they're going to be left," says Keep Your Promises Advisory Committee Member, Joe Kiger.

In a written statement, DuPont writes:

"DuPont and Chemours remain committed to fulfilling all its environmental and legal obligations that have been ongoing at its Washington Works facility in accordance with existing local, state and federal regulatory guidelines."

Keep Your Promises says the Mid Ohio Valley won't be the only community affected by this spinoff, 6 other counties are among the places that could have a negative consequence.

Updated: 12/19/2014 5:20 P.M.

The more things change, the more they will stay the same.

That's how DuPont Washington Works describes the transition of its Performance Products area to a new company next year.

The only change visible from DuPont will be the name-or names-on the sign.

As we first reported December 18, DuPont is spinning off its performance chemicals area of the plant to a newly-created company, Chemours.

The current site manager says while that part of the plant will be a new company, not only will the employment remain same, so will the products those employees produce.

"The future, when the spinoff is complete, is that the Washington Works site will have three companies," says Site Manager Bob Fehrenbacher. "But the products, and the employee base, will, by and large, be changed. We'll still be here, making the same products with the same people, and we'll have Chemours, DuPont and Kuraray on site."

Kuraray is the Japanese-owned company who, earlier this year, took over DuPont's Butacite manufacturing unit.

Fehrenbacher adds he will become manager of the chemours unit when the new company begins operations next July first.

Updated: 12/18/2014 6:15 P.M.

More big changes on the way for DuPont Washington Works: its Performance Chemicals division next year will have new owners.

Washington Works manager Bob Fehrenbacher says the Performance Chemicals unit is being spun off as a separate company named Chemours.

The change happens July first, affecting close to half of the plant's 1,600 employees. That means roughly half of them will be working for Chemours beginning July 1,2015.

DuPont made the announcement late Thursday.

Fehrenbacher says Chemours will have separate management and operate as its own business, sharing only utilities with DuPont.

This is the second major change at Washington Works in the past year.

Its Butacite division was sold to a Japanese company in 2013.


The DuPont corporation is considering selling or spinning-off its performance chemicals division.

The company made the announcement a day after reporting a twelve percent drop in its second quarter earnings.

In a company statement, DuPont says it's considering ways to provide growth options for its shareholders.

Robin Stemple, spokeswoman for DuPont Washington Works, says products are made at the plant for the performance chemicals division-as well as for other du-pont divisions.

Stemple added it's too early to speculate what that might mean for the local plant.

Washington Works is one of the area's largest private employers and is celebrating its 65th anniversary this month.

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