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Water Quality Control Commission imposes standards on perfluorinated chemicals

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Picture poisons flowing from your faucet instead of drinkable water. - FILE PHOTO
  • File photo
  • Picture poisons flowing from your faucet instead of drinkable water.

On April 9, the Fountain Valley Clean Water Coalition celebrated a victory when a state water panel adopted a standard for certain hazardous materials in groundwater.

The Water Quality Control Commission imposed standards for PFOS and PFOA, two types of perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs), the contaminants found in ground water as a result of Peterson Air Force Base using firefighting foam for years. The chemicals leached into the underground water supply, befouling wells and wreaking havoc on supplies in the Fountain Valley.

The standard adopted by the commission is 70 parts per trillion for PFOS and PFOA, which was proposed by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment's Hazardous Materials and Waste Water Management Division.

"This will give regulators the authority they need to hold polluters accountable for cleaning up to that level," the coalition said in a release. "It will also give them a much needed tool to better monitor discharge into the aquifer and prevent further ... contamination of our drinking water."

The coalition also noted that it argued successfully against Colorado Springs Utilities' bid to exclude its solids handling facility from the protected site. Biosolids have been identified as a possible source of PFOS contamination and Utilities' facility lies within the alluvial aquifer targeted for protection.


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