Read the full article by Denise Trabbic-Pointer (Military Poisions)
“The September 26, 2023 response from ATSDR to Julie Akey’s August 18, 2023 well-supported concerns and request for consideration is not in keeping with the Agency’s stated priorities to reduce the health impact from exposures to harmful chemicals in communities and to protect vulnerable populations (such as children, pregnant women, and the elderly) from the health risks of harmful exposures. The Agency appears to be immobile in considering relevant chemicals and exposure pathways for people living and working at Fort Ord during the time period 1985 through 1994. And, although they recognize that operations continued at the base through at least 1997, they refuse to include those years and those potentially impacted people in their reevaluation.
‘The Agency appears to be immobile
in considering relevant chemicals and
exposure pathways for people living
and working at Fort Ord during the time
period 1985 through 1994.‘
The decision to not include potential exposure to levels of PFAS in soil, groundwater and potentially drinking water, is of particular concern because the known health hazards of PFAS are so closely associated with the illnesses compiled and communicated to ATSDR. PFAS are called forever chemicals for a reason. They do not go away. They may have degraded to other PFAS compounds since 1994 but the levels of their presence in environmental media could be estimated based on known events (e.g., releases of AFFF or continued training using AFFF) and the use of AFFF on the base prior to 1994.
Although the ATSDR response assures that there will be some consideration to cumulative exposures beyond ingestion of drinking water impacted with the 1996 chemicals of concern, they will be neglecting other routes of exposure such as inhalation from vapor intrusion to indoor air from the known levels of volatile chemicals in groundwater and soil during the reevaluation time period.
If ATSDR does not expand their focus beyond drinking water and if they refuse to consider new science and emerging chemicals like PFAS in their reevaluation, I fear that they will simply come to their same erroneous conclusion of ‘no apparent public health hazard’ at Fort Ord. This will be a travesty for those more than 1,250 people that are suffering with chronic or fatal diseases as a result of their exposures at Fort Ord.”