State PFAS Contamination Report Due Next Week

State PFAS Contamination Report Due Next Week


A long-awaited state-issued report on the extent of perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substance (PFAS) contamination detected in several dozen area well tests in 2020 will be released next week, according to city officials. they wanted to comment on what the report might contain until the final version is published, but it is known that more tests will be carried out and the extent of the contamination is expected to increase somewhat.

State officials discovered the contamination near the Killingworth Fire Station on Route 81 next to City Hall during testing in 2021. The contaminants are believed to have been released through firefighting foams that the Killingworth Fire Department used for many years. years. Concerns have been raised that these compounds may have possible links to health problems, including developmental disorders, thyroid problems, and various types of cancer.

According to state and city officials, further sampling of drinking water at 70 other nearby homes found that approximately 34 of those private wells contained minor amounts of PFAS and as many as 15 of the wells exceeded established health limits.

First Councilwoman Nancy Gorski said she could not comment publicly on any specific details of the report, but stressed that the problem needs an immediate solution for residents.

“At this point, I don’t want to comment until [the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) and the Department of Public Health (DPH)] they are ready to talk to the media,” Gorski said. “I’m looking forward to getting the final report right now and moving forward with whatever we have to do to not only mitigate the impact of PFAS, but to carry out whatever remediation is available to us.”

Currently, the Killingworth contamination appears to be centered in the area surrounding the fire station and city hall and includes more than two dozen wells where some level of PFAS contamination has been found. Unfortunately, the problem of PFAS contamination is something that is likely to increase throughout the state and country as more and more areas of possible contamination are identified and tested, according to Gorski and state news releases.

Gorski met with DPH and DEEP officials earlier this month in hopes of receiving the final report, but did not appear to the town at that meeting.

“Obviously, Killingworth is heavily affected by PFAS, and we’re probably not the last city in Connecticut or the nation to be affected by this,” Gorski said. “Once we get the final report… we can start discussing what the next steps will be.”

According to published reports, PFAS have been used for decades in the manufacture of numerous products, including nonstick pans, mats, hydrophobic clothing, food packaging, and a firefighting foam that was routinely used and released into the environment during emergencies and training exercises. .

According to state estimates, there are more than 2,400 sites in Connecticut where officials suspect possible PFAS contamination, including airports, factories, fire stations, and even sewage treatment facilities.

PFAS are known to accumulate in the human body, but so far, although suspected, no clear link has been established as to whether or how much these compounds may have a negative impact on human health.

However, there are other obvious concerns, such as property values, who will pay for health tests, and who will pay for remediation and/or well site mitigation for those properties affected by contamination.

There is some positive news about recent state testing done in the last few years by DEEP and DPH. Although other sites of contamination have been discovered throughout Connecticut, the respective departments have stated that in many of the sites where they expected to find unhealthy amounts of contamination, significant levels were not detected. Including major cities like Hartford, Stamford, and New Haven.

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