“RYE — Gov. Chris Sununu on Tuesday signed into law Senate Bill 309, which is aimed at setting more protective standards for dangerous PFAS chemicals in local water, and increasing the number of PFAS contaminants the standards will regulate…

The bill specifically requires the state Department of Environmental Services to evaluate the ambient groundwater quality standards the department previously set for perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluoroctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) to make sure they are appropriate. It also requires DES to set ambient groundwater quality standards for two other PFAS chemicals that have been detected at high levels at the Coakley landfill and former Pease Air Force Base: perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA), and perfluorohexanesulfonic acid (PFHxS).

The bill also creates and funds a state toxicologist position and requires DES to establish ‘the criteria for setting Maximum Contaminant Limits (MCLs)’ in public drinking for the four PFAS chemicals. Setting MCLs for the chemicals will give the state more authority to force polluters to clean up contamination they cause.

Sununu stressed that when his administration came into office ‘we said that the environment was going to be a priority, clean water was going to be a priority.’

‘I really believe there (is) no greater faith in government that we place than every time we turn on the faucet and hand our kids a glass of water,’ Sununu said. ‘We are really trusting that the government did their job and that water is safe.’

Thousands of people working at Pease International Tradeport, along with children and infants who attended two day cares there, were exposed to multiple PFAS chemicals from contaminated water in the city-owned Haven well. Portsmouth shut down the well in May 2014 after the Air Force found high levels of perfluorooctane sulfonic acid, or PFOS, in the well…

SB 309, Sununu said, ‘finally puts into a place a lot of the necessary steps to finally start looking at standards, to bring in a toxicologist to really understand the science so we truly understand the health implications. We do have problems here there’s no doubt about it. We want to make sure the problems of today don’t becomes the crisis of tomorrow.’ ”

Read the full article by Jeff McMenemy