High readings for PFAS found in Montpelier and Newport wastewater plants

Feb 11, 2020

The wastewater treatment plants in Montpelier and Newport have “significantly higher” PFAS concentrations in the discharge leaving their plants, according to a report out today from the state Department of Environmental Conservation. 

The two plants cited are the only ones that regularly accept landfill leachate for processing.

PFAS, which stands for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a family of widely used chemicals under scrutiny for their health impacts. Last year, lawmakers passed a law, Act 21, requiring the state Agency of Natural Resources to set drinking water standards for five PFAS compounds — PFOA, PFOS, PFHxS, PFHpA and PFNA. The agency is moving ahead with setting those standards at a combined 20 parts per trillion. 

The law also required ANR to come up with a plan for a statewide investigation into potential sources of PFAS contamination and to submit a report on managing landfill leachate, which is liquid contaminated with landfill pollutants. And the state had to submit a plan for regulating the chemicals in surface waters, which also came out Wednesday. 

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