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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?

State Will Require More PFAS Testing At Merrimack's Watson Park, A Former Industrial Site

The state will require more testing for PFAS chemicals at another former industrial site in Merrimack – the Harcros Chemical site, which is now the town's Watson Park.

PFAS-type chemicals are man-made, don't biodegrade and have been linked to a range of serious health problems. Regulators are investigating their presence at dozens of sites statewide.

Add to that list: the old Harcros factory site, also a former tannery, which became Merrimack's Watson Park. The site's current owner told the state last fall it had found PFAS levels above state standards in groundwater there.

The property is an open space about five miles south of the Saint Gobain factory, which is thought to have polluted hundreds of nearby wells with PFAS in 2016.

State officials have asked the Harcros site's owner for more details about the contamination by mid-September. They want to confirm the PFAS levels, where it might be coming from, and whether any active drinking water wells are threatened.

The state has asked for results by mid-September, and may require more response to the contamination after that.

Annie has covered the environment, energy, climate change and the Seacoast region for NHPR since 2017. She leads the newsroom's climate reporting project, By Degrees.

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