The Vermont Air National Guard announced it has discovered elevated levels of Perfluorinated Compounds, also known as PFCs, in a private drinking water well near the guard base at Burlington International Airport, in South Burlington.
A press release states base officials received test results this week reflecting PFC levels above state regulatory guidelines. The test followed a base inspection for PFCs conducted by the U.S. Air Force.
Drinking water for the base and neighboring communities is supplied by Champlain Water District. The press release states, "According to publicly available information on their website, finished drinking water from CWD was tested in 2016 and found to be unaffected."
PFCs are synthetic chemicals found in consumer goods such as nonstick pans and stain-resistant fabrics. In 1970 the Air Force began using firefighting foam containing PFCs.
“As Green Mountain Boys, we operate and live in our surrounding communities,” 158th Fighter Wing Commander Col. David Smith states in the release. “We remain committed to proactively addressing this ongoing process.”
The Vermont Air National Guard says it is responding by coordinating closely with multiple state agencies, including the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation, as well as installing a carbon filtration system to remove PFCs.