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Midwest Energy Emissions wins $57 million in US coal patent trial

Post Time:2024-03-04 Source:Reuters Author:Blake Brittain Views:

March 1 (Reuters) - A jury in Delaware federal court said on Friday that Midwest Energy Emissions Corp (MEEC.PK),  (ME2C), which specializes in reducing mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants, was entitled to more than $57 million in damages from a group of coal refiners that it accused of infringing two patents.

The jury found that the coal-refining plant operators, which ME2C had accused of violating its rights in mercury-capture technology, were responsible for paying varying amounts of the $57 million verdict, with a defendant identified as CERT Operations RCB LLC liable for the largest amount, more than $35 million.

It also found that the companies infringed willfully, which could lead a judge to multiply the award by up to three times.

A spokesperson for ME2C did not have any immediate comment on the verdict. Attorneys for the refiners did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the verdict.

Houston-based ME2C filed the lawsuit against the companies and several others in 2019, alleging they reaped "staggering profits" from federal tax credits for using its technology to reduce the amount of mercury released by coal-fired power plants. It also argued that the refiners induced coal power plants not involved in the trial to infringe its patents.

ME2C said in a court filing that it was seeking royalties of $1 per ton of coal sold by the refiners to power plants. The operators of the refining plants, located in Alabama, Missouri, Nebraska and North Dakota, argued that they did not infringe the patents and that the patents were invalid.