DIAMOND BAR, CA - Selling non-compliant paints, wood stains and other coatings will cost Home Depot $8 million to settle alleged air quality violations with California's South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD).

Home Depot to Pay $8M Fine for Selling Banned Wood FinishesAccording to SCAQMD, during 2009 and 2010 Home Depot stores in southern California sold paints, sealers, primers and other products "containing illegal levels of smog-forming volatile organic compounds (VOCs)." Southern California, including Los Angeles, is considered to be the most polluted region in the country.

The agreement settles a lawsuit filed in June 2011 against Home Depot for violations of SCAQMD’s Rule 1113 governing architectural coatings as well as violations of state law prohibiting unfair competition and false and misleading advertising. In "numerous cases" Home Depot stores continued selling illegal products even after being warned by SCAQMDA officials. SCAQMD said between September 2009 and April 2010, Home Depot sotres in 15 area cities sold products banned in the region, including clear wood finishes, acrylic paints, sealers, lacquers, roof coatings, primers and base paints.

The U.S EPA notes that southern California, which includes Los Angeles, fails to meet national air quality standards despite having some of the most stringent air pollution standards in the country.

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