Fluoride Action Network

PFOA: Installation of carbon filtration systems in Petersburgh delayed

Source: NEWS10 ABC | April 6th, 2016 | By Lindsay Nielsen
Location: United States, New York
Industry type: Perfluorinated chemicals

PETERSBURGH, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Some Petersburgh residents will be getting carbon filters due to the PFOA contamination, but the installation process has been delayed.

Lenore Humphrey has lived in Petersburgh for decades.

“They would have to take their dad’s doubled up handkerchiefs and hold it over their face,” she said of her children because of the bad smell coming from Taconic Plastics.

She built her home in 1968 before Taconic was the larger plastics company it is today.

“I called EPA when you couldn’t breathe, and it really didn’t go anywhere,” she said.

In March, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation released documents to NEWS10 ABC that showed high levels of PFOA at Taconic in 2004. Humphrey said she learned the news for the first time during a town hall meeting on Tuesday.

“I just think they’re lousy neighbors,” she said. “This was the ultimate kick in the butt finding out they knew for 14 years. I raised kids here.”

Now Humphrey is waiting for a carbon filtration system to be installed at her home. Her well tested at 400 parts per trillion for PFOA.

“That’s what I’m waiting for,” she said.

But now there’s a slight delay in the process.

According to Rensselaer County Department of Health spokesperson Chris Meyers, installation of carbon filtration systems in Petersburgh has been delayed after he said the DEC recommended a specific type of carbon be used.

Meyers said systems have already been installed in five Petersburgh homes using a carbon called Calgon 400, but he said the state later recommended a different type of carbon after learning what’s been working best in Hoosick Falls to remove PFOA.

“As far as the municipal water district is concerned, we’re looking right now at temporary carbon filters to take out the PFOA,” Petersburgh Water Superintendent Ben Krahforst said. “We know something has to be done. Town is getting active in that. We no longer can wait on the state or the county, although we would have to work with them on that.”

Currently, 21 homes in Petersburgh will be receiving filtration systems.