Sep 12, 2019

Colorado Action Plan to Combat PFAS in Drinking Water

Colorado has introduced a plan to fight the emerging contaminants PFAS

Denver introduces plan to combat PFAS contamination in drinking water

Colorado officials have introduced an action plan to combat per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in drinking water, in response to widespread contamination throughout the state and particularly in the Denver metro area.

According to The Denver Post, the plan will increase state capacity for testing water, set a state-level limit and begin establishing a state maximum contaminant level. The plan also will prohibit fire departments from using PFAS during training, limit the use of firefighting foam at airports and support small systems who struggle with PFAS contamination.

The action plan comes as concerns over PFAS in drinking water rise across the state. Some tests have found PFAS contamination in groundwater in metro Denver up to 2,928 times higher than the federal health advisory limit, reported The Denver Post. The chemicals also have been found at Buckley Air Force Base and at the Suncor oil refinery, as well as west of Boulder and near Colorado Springs. 

Colorado officials have estimated that more than 100,000 residents have depended on public drinking water systems with elevated PFAS levels have been detected, reported The Denver Post. State health officials are working to identify additional areas of concern as PFAS potentially spreads through groundwater to private wells. 

“My top priority is to break the chain of exposure,” said John Putnam, the state health department’s director of environmental programs. “Find where it is. Stop people from ingesting it.”

Read the complete investigation from The Denver Post.

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