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3M Settlement with Public Water Suppliers to Address PFAS in Drinking Water Receives Final Court Approval

April 1, 2024 6:45 AM
  • Agreement includes pre-tax present value commitment of up to $10.3 billion payable over 13 years
  • Supports PFAS remediation for U.S. public water suppliers (PWS) across the country that have detected any form of PFAS at any level or may do so in the future

ST. PAUL, Minn., April 1, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- 3M today announced that on Friday, March 29, the company's previously announced settlement agreement with U.S. public water suppliers (PWS) received final approval from the U.S. District Court in Charleston, South Carolina.

The now-finalized agreement will support PWS that detect PFAS at any level or may do so in the future and will benefit U.S.-based PWS that provide drinking water to Americans across the country. The agreement received overwhelming support and participation from U.S. PWS, and the court resolved the small number of objections that were raised in favor of the settlement.

"This is yet another important step forward for 3M as we continue to deliver on our priorities. The final approval of this settlement and continued progress toward exiting all PFAS manufacturing by the end of 2025 will further our efforts to reduce risk and uncertainty as we move forward," said 3M chairman and CEO Mike Roman.

As previously disclosed, 3M recorded an accrual of $10.3 billion for this matter, which reflects the pre-tax present value of the expected payments over 13 years under the agreement. Payments under the agreement are scheduled to begin in the third quarter of 2024, provided there are no pending appeals of the final approval order. 3M also continues to actively engage in insurance recovery activities.

The table below sets forth the expected pre-tax payments that 3M would make assuming the nominal $12.5B settlement cap is reached.

Pre-Tax Payments ($B)

2023

2024

2025

2026

2027

2028

2029

2030

2031

2032

2033

2034

2035

2036

Total

PFAS PWS Settlement

0.1

2.9

1.8

0.4

2.6

1.6

0.6

0.6

0.6

0.5

0.4

0.2

0.2

0.2

12.5

Additional details of the agreement, including the agreed-upon payment schedule, are available on the Settlement Administrator's website and in 3M's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Forward-Looking Statements
This news release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. You can identify these statements by the use of words such as "plan," "expect," "aim," "believe," "project," "target," "anticipate," "intend," "estimate," "will," "should," "could," "would," "forecast" and other words and terms of similar meaning in connection with any discussion of future operating or financial performance or business plans or prospects. Forward-looking information is based on management's estimates, assumptions, and projections, and is subject to significant uncertainties and other factors, many of which are beyond 3M's control. Important risk factors could cause actual future results and other future events to differ materially from those currently estimated by management, including, but not limited to, whether the court approved PWS Settlement will be appealed, the filing of additional, or the outcome of any other pending or future, litigation relating to PFAS or related products or chemistries, costs of remediation obligations relating to PFAS or related products or chemistries, whether the Company's insurance recovery activities will be successful, changes in related laws or regulations, or the impact of the settlement, any litigation or related matters on 3M's financial condition. Additional important risk factors that could cause future actual results or events to differ materially are the following: (1) worldwide economic, political, regulatory, international trade, geopolitical, capital markets and other external conditions and other factors beyond the Company's control, including inflation, recession, military conflicts, natural and other disasters or climate change affecting the operations of the Company or its customers and suppliers; (2) foreign currency exchange rates and fluctuations in those rates; (3) risks related to certain fluorochemicals, including liabilities related to claims, lawsuits, and government regulatory proceedings concerning various PFAS-related products and chemistries, as well as risks related to the Company's plans to exit PFAS manufacturing and discontinue use of PFAS across its product portfolio; (4) legal proceedings, including significant developments that could occur in the legal and regulatory proceedings described in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended Dec. 31, 2023 and any subsequent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q (the "Reports"); (5) competitive conditions and customer preferences; (6) the timing and market acceptance of new product and service offerings; (7) the availability and cost of purchased components, compounds, raw materials and energy due to shortages, increased demand and wages, supply chain interruptions, or natural or other disasters; (8) unanticipated problems or delays with the phased implementation of a global enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, or security breaches and other disruptions to the Company's information technology infrastructure; (9) the impact of acquisitions, strategic alliances, divestitures, and other strategic events resulting from portfolio management actions and other evolving business strategies; (10) operational execution, including the extent to which the Company can realize the benefits of planned productivity improvements, as well as the impact of organizational restructuring activities; (11) financial market risks that may affect the Company's funding obligations under defined benefit pension and postretirement plans; (12) the Company's credit ratings and its cost of capital; (13) tax-related external conditions, including changes in tax rates, laws or regulations; (14) matters relating to the spin-off of the Company's Health Care business; and (15) matters relating to Combat Arms Earplugs ("CAE"), including those relating to, the August 2023 settlement that is intended to resolve, to the fullest extent possible, all litigation and alleged claims involving the CAE sold or manufactured by the Company's subsidiary Aearo Technologies and certain of its affiliates and/or 3M. Changes in such assumptions or factors could produce significantly different results. A further description of these factors is located in the Reports under "Cautionary Note Concerning Factors That May Affect Future Results" and "Risk Factors" in Part I, Items 1 and 1A (Annual Report) and in Part I, Item 2 and Part II, Item 1A (Quarterly Reports). The Company assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements discussed herein as a result of new information or future events or developments.

About 3M
3M (NYSE: MMM) believes science helps create a brighter world for everyone. By unlocking the power of people, ideas, and science to reimagine what's possible, our global team uniquely addresses the opportunities and challenges of our customers, communities, and planet. Learn how we're working to improve lives and make what's next at 3M.com/news.

Investor Contact:
Bruce Jermeland
651-733-1807
or
Diane Farrow
612-202-2449
or
Eric Herron
651-233-0043

Media Contact:
Sean Lynch
[email protected]

3M (PRNewsfoto/3M)

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