Local officials and residents concerned about the presence of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in drinking water supplies in suburban Philadelphia asked the state and the Environmental Protection Agency to take urgent action at a listening session hosted by the federal agency on Wednesday. A resident of Horsham — home of the former Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base Willow Grove and the active Horsham Air Guard Station — said she wanted to see blood testing done on a wider scale than is currently happening as part of a state pilot study that began earlier this summer, reported the Bucks County Courier Times.
Michael McGee, executive director of the Horsham Land Redevelopment Authority, said he would like to see PFOA and PFOS listed as hazardous substances under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act. He also said the government should take responsibility for remediating contaminated water supplies. “Sources of PFAS remain on the base, in the water and in the soil, and they must be remediated as part of this plan,” McGhee said, referring to the national PFAS management plan the agency is preparing. At the outset of the National Leadership Summit EPA held in May, then-Administrator Scott Pruitt said the agency would begin the necessary steps to consider designating those two chemicals as hazardous substances. Such a move would help base closure communities still waiting to obtain land from the military services.