Read the full article by Mara Hoplamazian (New Hampshire Public Radio)
“Saint-Gobain has agreed to permanently provide safe drinking water for about 1,000 properties testing above state limits for PFAS chemicals, after the contamination was attributed to air emissions from the company’s facility in Merrimack.
The properties covered by the agreement have up to this point been offered bottled water by Saint-Gobain, some households since 2020, said Mike Wimsatt, director of the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services’ waste management division.
‘People are frustrated. You know, they want to have safe, clean water for them and their families,’ he said. ‘Nobody likes carting bottled water or having to have bottled water delivered to their home. They’d much rather have a permanent solution where they can draw water from their tap to consume.’
Saint-Gobain provided permanent drinking water remediation solutions, like new water connections or treatment systems, for about 800 properties, after the 2016 discovery of contaminants in drinking water in Litchfield and Merrimack.
PFAS are a group of widely-used man-made chemicals that have been linked to harmful health effects like high cholesterol and kidney damage by scientific studies.
In 2019, state regulators lowered the maximum levels of PFOA, one PFAS chemical, allowed in drinking water. After additional sampling, 1,000 new properties tested above the lower standard. The agreement announced Monday addresses the contamination on those properties.
In Bedford, Litchfield, Merrimack and Londonderry, 353 properties will receive either a connection to a waterline or a point-of-entry treatment system to provide water within state limits for PFAS.
The company is required to make a plan by the end of April to provide all properties within the area in which legal agreements indicate Saint-Gobain is responsible for contaminating wells with remedial solutions. That should cover about 600 additional properties that have already been offered bottled water, according to NHDES.”…