Florida sugarcane farmers are once again asking a judge to toss a lawsuit alleging Glades residents are being harmed by pollution from controlled sugarcane burns.
Earlier this year, that lawsuit faced a hurdle as a judge partially dismissed the suit, arguing the allegations against the farmers had not been proven.
“There is nothing in the amended complaint showing that each of the plaintiffs has been harmed by all of the defendants,” U.S. District Judge Rodney Smith said.
Plaintiffs had attempted to argue the smoke from those burns contains pollutants which spread outside of farmland into nearby residential communities. Judge Smith said the plaintiffs failed to connect the smoke to any actual harm, but did allow plaintiffs to refile their complaint in an effort to present better evidence residents.
In June, the plaintiffs did just that, filing a second amended complaint which was again met with a motion to dismiss by U.S. Sugar and other defendants named in the lawsuit.
Attorneys for the sugarcane farmers argue plaintiffs’ reliance on modeling showing the potential effects of the pollutants do not demonstrate any actual harm caused by the ash for residents in the area. Moreover, they argue, the plaintiffs’