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Michigan, Air Force To Speed Up PFAS Action

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Michigan officials say they’ve reached a deal with the US Air Force to speed up action to clean up PFAS contamination at the former Wurtsmith Air Force Base in Oscoda. As we hear from Capital Bureau Chief Rick Pluta, they acknowledge that’s just one part of dealing with the state’s PFAS problems.

The contamination at Wurtsmith is from the use of firefighting foam.

Scott Dean is with the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy.

He says the state’s also looking into contamination at 50 other locations including tanneries, factories, and private airfields.

Dean says the use of PFAS was so widespread finding more contaminated sites is a near certainty. He says the state’s also looking to the federal government to adopt cleanup standards as soon as possible.

“Because they’re not going anywhere. There’s not a state in the union that’s not going to find them in their water supplies.”

PFAS have been linked to maladies including some types of cancer, and thyroid conditions.

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987. His journalism background includes stints with UPI, The Elizabeth (NJ) Daily Journal, The (Pontiac, MI) Oakland Press, and WJR. He is also a lifelong public radio listener.
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