ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Statewide targeted sampling for two cancer-causing industrial chemicals found no new cases of drinking water contamination, New York health and environmental regulators said Feb. 1.
The Water Quality Rapid Response Team, led by the state's health and environmental conservation agencies, says it mapped more than 250 facilities that reported using or storing PFOA, or perfluorooctanoic acid, used in making non-stick products, or the related chemical PFOS, used in firefighting foam.
The team reported that 38 drinking water systems within a half-mile of those facilities were tested. Most had no trace of the chemicals and all were well below the Environmental Protection Agency's advisory level, officials said.
Regulators said one well at the Sullivan County Airport was above the advisory level but it wasn't a drinking water source and is no longer used.
The chemicals are classified by the EPA as “unregulated contaminants,'' meaning water supply operators aren't required to routinely test for them. Environmental groups urged statewide testing last year after a high level of PFOA was found in drinking water in the Rensselaer County villages of Hoosick Falls and Petersburgh.
Officials said monitoring will continue at the 38 drinking water systems, which are in Cattaraugus, Delaware, Dutchess, Franklin, Greene, Nassau, Oneida, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, Seneca, Suffolk, and Sullivan counties.
The agencies didn't identify the specific water supplies sampled or name the facilities that reported handling the chemicals.
The facilities were identified through a survey sent to fire departments, airports, military installations, industries and chemical storage facilities.