“RALEIGH – Last year, the North Carolina General Assembly backed a locally focused strategy in response to revelations about GenX in Wilmington’s water supply.

Last week, several members who supported the plan told researchers from the University of North Carolina Wilmington and officials with the Cape Fear Public Utility Authority they didn’t like what they got.

At a meeting Thursday in Raleigh of the House Committee on North Carolina River Quality, Rep. Jimmy Dixon, R-Duplin, accused UNCW scientists who worked on GenX studies on oysters, rainwater and river sediments of practicing “political science” to get the most ominous results.

He criticized CFPUA executive director Jim Flechtner for including additional per-fluorinated compounds along with GenX in filtering tests and for the report’s cost estimates of new water system filtration.

‘I think your presentation to the committee was biased in making the problem look bigger than it is,’ he said…

The release of both reports was a requirement under last year’s GenX provision in House Bill 56, which set an April 1, 2018, due date for the reports to be sent to the legislature’s Environmental Review Commission. Both reports, which have been available on the ERC’s website since then, are public records.

On Friday, UNCW and CFPUA each issued statements standing by their work.

‘Our scientists have no agenda, political or otherwise, beyond following standard scientific protocols and performing the research requested of them via HB56,’ university spokeswoman Janine Iamunno, said in an email response to Coastal Review Online

In a tersely worded statement to Coastal Review Online Friday, CFPUA executive director Jim Flechtner said the utility also stands by its report.

‘CFPUA presented yesterday at the request of the legislators. The information was shared accurately and correctly. We stand by what we said,’ Flechtner said.”

Read the full article by Kirk Ross