May 04, 2021

Arizona's Gov. Ducey Calls on Department Of Defense to Address Groundwater Contamination

Gov. Doug Ducey sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Defense to address groundwater contamination near military installations in Arizona to protect against additional exposure to per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS)

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Gov. Doug Ducey has asked the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) to address groundwater contamination near military installations in Arizona.

In an Apr. 27 letter to Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, Gov. Ducey requested DOD to identify and treat water in Arizona contaminated in the areas surrounding four DOD installations and to prevent additional human exposure to per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) from other DOD facilities in Arizona, which impact the groundwater.

The bases are Luke Air Force Base, Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Morris Air National Guard Base and the former Williams Air Force Base, according to Arizona’s Governor's website. These bases are located in the two most populous metropolitan areas in Arizona and each is surrounded by thousands of Arizonans who rely on clean groundwater for drinking water purposes.

"Ensuring that all Arizonans have the cleanest possible drinking water from public water systems today and for our future is critical for our health and well-being and a top priority of our state,” said Gov. Ducey in the news release on his website. “The situation in Arizona deserves attention. Arizona, through the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality, is acting to contain the spread of PFAS now, and I ask you to make a similar commitment on behalf of DOD for prompt remedial actions to address the DOD-related PFAS contamination of groundwater throughout Arizona and protect the health and safety of Arizonans.”

According to the letter, to prevent additional human exposure to PFAS, Gov. Ducey requested the following of DOD:

  • Share PFAS data related to Arizona installations to help determine the extent of PFAS impacts;
  • Develop a preliminary conceptual site model for each DOD facility based on available groundwater, geological and facility data;
  • Estimate a preliminary time range for when DOD-related PFAS plumes may reach public drinking water systems;
  • Conduct accelerated remedial investigations with the primary purpose of designing early response actions to stop the PFAS plumes;
  • And design and install early response actions to protect public drinking water systems at risk from DOD-related PFAS.

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