Ayotte Statement on Air Force Agreement with City of Portsmouth to Remove Water Contaminants

WASHINGTON, D.C. – (RealEstateRama) — The City of Portsmouth and Pease Development Authority announced an agreement related to the contamination clean-up of the Smith, Harrison and Haven Wells. U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte issued the following statement on today’s agreement:

“I am pleased the city of Portsmouth and the Pease Development Authority have reached an agreement with the Air Force to restore the aquifer, and I will continue to monitor the Air Force’s compliance with the Environmental Protection Agency’s directive in order to ensure the service cleans-up the mess it created and the residents have the clean water they deserve,” said Senator Ayotte.

In 2014, the Haven well at Pease was closed after tests performed by the Air Force revealed high levels of perfluorochemicals (PFCs). The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) later issued a cleanup order to the Air Force that indicated the PFCs in the Haven Well had been and would continue to migrate towards the Harrison and Smith wells, resulting in further contamination of the aquifer at Pease. Research has associated exposure to these chemicals with certain types of cancer. The contamination is due to the Air Force’s use of fire-fighting foam that contained PFCs at Pease.

Ayotte has continually pressed the Air Force to be responsive to the people of Portsmouth that have been affected by the contamination and worked to includelanguage in the Fiscal Year 2016 National Defense Authorization Act Report requiring the Air Force to submit a plan detailing its efforts to identify and notify those who may have been exposed to PFCs while stationed at Pease. Ayotte has also pushed the Air Force to comply with EPA directives regarding cleanup.

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