Sununu Signs Bill to Clean Up Coakley Landfill Site

Aug 16, 2019

Credit Annie Ropeik / NHPR

The Coakley Landfill will soon get treatment and cleanup from New Hampshire's Department of Environmental Services.

Governor Sununu signed a bill Friday directing the DES to work with the EPA and the Coakley Landfill Group to pursue removal or containment of contaminants at the Superfund site, after increasing levels of PFAS chemicals have been linked to contaminated water in the Seacoast.

The EPA must come up with a cost and cleanup plan by January 1 of next year.

Former state Rep. Mindi Messmer of Rockingham has been active in addressing problems at the Coakley Landfill. She says the bill is a step in the right direction.

"I'm thrilled that finally, after decades, our Superfund failure will be corrected," she said after the bill was signed into law Friday. 

"We've seen fish and we've seen drinking water supplies, public, private and commercial water supplies be impacted by this site, and it's time for the polluters to do what they should've done decades ago."

DES has said after a cost assessment is completed, the site's polluters will be responsible for paying for cleanup.