Oct 24, 2019

N.J. Water Treatment Facility Shut Down After PFAS Contamination Discovery

N.J.’s Warren Avenue water treatment facility is being shut down until further notice after the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) detected perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA) in one of the town’s wells.

N.J.’s Warren Avenue water treatment facility is being shut down until further notice after the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) detected perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA) in one of the town’s wells.

Bellmawr Borough, N.J., is in the process of shutting down its Warren Avenue water treatment facility after the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) notified the borough of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) contamination. 

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, a sample collected Aug. 13 showed that the average level of perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA) over the last year has been 19 ppt. The state standard for PFNA is 13 ppt.

“This is not an emergency. If it had been, you would have been notified within 24 hours. However, some people who drink water containing PFNA in excess of the MCL over many years could experience problems with their liver; kidney; immune system; or, in males, reproductive system. For females, drinking water containing PFNA in excess of the MCL over many years may cause developmental delays in a fetus and or infant,” reported the notice

In 2013, PFNA was found in the south Jersey town of Paulsboro at 150 ppt, which is more than 10 times the state limit, according to WHYY News

The five companies deemed responsible for widespread pollution of N.J’s drinking water systems - 3M, DuPont, DowDuPont, Chemours and Solvayto - were ordered to clean up the pollution in March by the NJDEP.

New Jersey is the first state in the U.S. to set a drinking-water standard for PFNA. The state plans to regulate two other types of PFAS chemicals, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.

“The DEP needs to take immediate steps on mitigating this critical issue and hold polluters accountable,” said New Jersey Sierra Club director Jeff Tittel in a statement.

In the statement, officials remind residents they do not need to take any action and water service to residents will be uninterrupted.

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