DuPont’s toxic C8 chemical still unchecked, group says

Print

“When a toxic chemical used to make Teflon was discovered in the drinking water in parts of New York, Vermont and New Hampshire, federal and state officials made changes to protect residents.

Officials in New York installed filters, and Vermont’s health department set a new standard for the chemical, perfluorooctanoic acid, in drinking water, establishing one of the lowest allowable levels in the nation.

And the governors of all three states sent a letter this month to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, asking the agency to help with additional drinking water testing and analysis in communities exposed to to perfluorooctanoic acid, known as PFOA or C8, which DuPont used to make Teflon at a number of facilities, including its Washington Works plant, located on the Ohio River near Parkersburg, West Virginia.

The chemical has been linked to serious health problems including cancer, pregnancy complications and thyroid disease.

Yet in southeastern Ohio and near Parkersburg — considered by many the center of C8 contamination in the country — governments have remained largely silent. Neither the federal nor state governments require public drinking water systems in Ohio or West Virginia to filter out the chemical.

In 2005, the Ohio EPA sent letters to customers of the Little Hocking Water Association, advising residents that elevated C8 levels had been found in their water and noting that the agency would “continue its involvement in this issue.”

But in the decade since, Ohio largely has deferred to the U.S. EPA rather than push for additional testing of water or residents…”

Read more from The Columbus Dispatch