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Environment
0000017a-15d9-d736-a57f-17ff8f4d0000NHPR’s ongoing coverage of water contamination at the former Pease Air Force Base and in the communities surrounding the Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics plant in Merrimack. We’ll keep you updated on day to day developments, and ask bigger questions, such as:What do scientists know about the health effects of perfluorochemicals like PFOA, PFOS and PFHxS?How are policy makers in New Hampshire responding to these water contaminants?How are scientists and policymakers communicating potential risks?How are other states responding to similar contaminations?

Officials Give Update on Contamination at Coakley Superfund Site

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Jason Moon for NHPR
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State and federal environmental officials held a meeting in North Hampton Wednesday night to update residents on efforts to address contamination at the former Coakley landfill site.

For three hours, scientists with the EPA and the state Department of Environmental Services laid out the work that has been done and that will be done to monitor and address contaminated water at a former landfill on the Seacoast.

The Coakley landfill, now a superfund site, was shut down decades ago, but perfleurochemicals, or PFCs, were only recently detected there. PFCs have been tentatively linked to a number of adverse health effects, including cancer.

The EPA says in the short term the site poses no unacceptable risks to human health, but adds that more study is needed to know if that holds true for the long term.

For some who attended the meeting concerned about PFC contamination in their drinking water, like Lisa Moll of Rye, that was cold comfort.

“Every meeting I’ve gone to for the last year-and-a-half now, I hear how we need more studying and more analysis," Moll said. "There’s so much inconsistent messaging going on that we as residents are completely confused.”

The EPA says it understands the concerns of local residents and is working as fast as it can to fully understand the situation.

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