“GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Officials with Gerald R. Ford International Airport says tests conducted on its groundwater indicate levels of a chemical contained in firefighting foam are within guidelines recommended by the federal government.
The airport tested for the presence of PFAS on its property, and airport officials say the results shows ‘no detectable PFOS in any groundwater samples and detectable PFOA levels of no more than 54 [parts per trillion] ppt.’
The state’s minimum level for cleanup is 70 ppt of PFAS compounds, PFOA and PFOS.
Airports around the country are grappling with the issue of possible pollution from the chemical firefighting foam AFFF. Firefighters used AFFF, which contains PFAS, in annual training exercises on the airport’s property from the mid-1970s to the mid-1990s.
However, the AFFF used at the airport still contains PFAS, but in June 2017, Ford transitioned to a less hazardous material.
The state of Michigan is one of only a handful of states that have set a PFAS advisory level, but Rep. Winnie Brinks, D-Grand Rapids, proposed a bill that would bring the level down to 5 ppt, the lowest benchmark in the nation.
Airport officials say that they are also planning on developing a plan to test groundwater in the area surrounding their property. Additional next steps include analyzing the results and collaborating with the MDEQ and the Kent County Health Department.”
Read the full article by WZZM staff