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Whiskey Fungus Claims Against Kentucky Distiller Revived

Oct. 5, 2017, 3:08 PM

A Kentucky distiller can’t rely on the Clean Air Act to dismiss state-law tort claims that its bourbon-aging plant fouled a neighbor’s property with fungus, the Kentucky Supreme Court ruled (Brown-Forman Corp. v. Miller, Ky., No. 2014-SC-000717-DG, 9/28/17).

The Sept. 28 ruling is a win for George Miller, who claims that ethanol emissions from a bourbon warehouse of Brown-Forman Corp. allowed black deposits—known as whiskey fungus—to proliferate on his property.

Kentucky’s high court overturned a decision by the state’s court of appeals that the Clean Air Act, a federal air quality law, preempted Miller’s negligence, nuisance, and trespass ...

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