“Phil Berger is either breathtakingly ill-informed about the pollution problems threatening residents of the Cape Fear River Basin or he just doesn’t care that residents’ health is imperiled by pollutants that are likely to cause cancer. There isn’t much gray area between those possibilities to explain why the state Senate leader shut down a House bill last week that would have ramped up state efforts to track and study GenX and other chemicals that have leaked, flown or been dumped from the Chemours plant on the Cumberland-Bladen county line.

The legislation that would have added $2.3 million to fund the state’s response to GenX pollution and other water quality issues passed the House unanimously on Wednesday. But Berger quickly called it a do-nothing measure that “unfortunately does nothing to prevent GenX from going into the water supply.” Berger said the time to talk about appropriating money is when testing that was ordered last summer is completed…

The legislation that Berger shot down would have, among other things, given state agencies more sophisticated testing equipment to determine what’s in the water and land around the Chemours plant. Testing so far has even found GenX in the honey from bee hives not far from the plant site. The effect on the intensive agricultural operations in that area needs to be evaluated as well, and the additional Department of Environmental Quality staffing that the $2.3 million would have provided would help begin that research. It also would help DEQ catch up on its long backlog of discharge permit requests.”

Read the full article in the Fayetteville Observer.