New Hampshire's senators are joining an effort to hold the U.S. military more accountable for water contamination at sites like Pease International Tradeport.
The senators are co-sponsoring a bipartisan bill called the PFAS Accountability Act, along with Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, lead sponsor Sen. Debbie Stabenow of Michigan, and others.
The bill, filed last week, would set requirements and deadlines for the Department of Defense and other agencies to create cleanup agreements and payment plans with state authorities for sites contaminated with PFAS chemicals.
PFAS was widely used for decades in firefighting foams and other products, often at military sites. That left serious contamination in drinking water wells at places like Pease.
If passed, the senators say, the bill would bring more federal aid to towns and states struggling with PFAS left behind by the U.S. government.
“By holding federal agencies accountable for addressing PFAS contamination at military bases, this bipartisan legislation is a commonsense step to ensure that the federal government is fulfilling that important duty,” says Sen. Maggie Hassan in a statement.
The bill is the latest effort by New Hampshire’s congressional delegation to prioritize and fund PFAS research and response – including a first-of-its-kind national PFAS health study that Sen. Jeanne Shaheen made focus in part on Pease.
It comes as the Environmental Protection Agency is also developing new regulations to accelerate PFAS cleanup at sites around the country with military, industrial, commercial and municipal contamination.