An environmental advocacy group has listed 58 more military sites where harmful levels of PFAS contaminants have been detected in groundwater or drinking water sources, Military Times reported.
The list published by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) includes installations ranging from Elmendorf Air Force Base and Fort Richardson in Alaska, to Fort Eustice, Va., and dozens more across the nation , according to the report.
The environmental group’s latest additions bring the total to 175 military installations and sites nationwide it has classified as known to have detectable levels of harmful contamination.
Defense Department officials have also acknowledged more than double the sites identified by EWG as having known or suspected presence of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS/PFOS contaminants, according to the report.
In the past the military used PFAS-based firefighting foams in training and actual fire incidents on installations for decades. However, recent DOD policy has directed that firefighting foam containing the contaminants no longer be used for maintenance, testing or training.
The chemicals are also found in hundreds of everyday household products and Environmental Protection Agency experts have acknowledged the contaminants’ links to cancers and other health problems.
Air Force photo by Airman Jacob Wrightsman