U.S. Senate committee tackles PFAS contamination

WASHINGTON (WOOD) — For the second time in less than a month, lawmakers in Washington are tackling the spreading PFAS scare.

The  U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs was  set to hold a hearing Wednesday afternoon on the likely carcinogen that  has contaminated drinking water, lakes and river across Michigan.

State tests have found nearly 1.6 million people in Michigan are drinking public water with at least some PFAS in it.

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In Belmont, it came from the Scotchgard that Wolverine Worldwide used for decades to treat shoes.

In Parchment, where 3,000 people couldn't drink city water for a month, a former paper plant is the likely source.

At  some airports, including the Gerald R. Ford International Airport in  Cascade Township and the Wurtsmith Air Force Base in Oscoda,  firefighting foam was the culprit.

A U.S. House subcommittee  hearing earlier this month led to calls for a stronger response from the  Environmental Protection Agency.

On Wednesday, Democratic U.S.  Rep. Dan Kildee of Flint said he's amended an Federal Aviation  Administration bill to no longer require airports to use PFAS-based  firefighting foam.

"Almost unbelievably, the law right now  requires airports that use firefighting foam to use a form of this foam  that includes this dangerous chemical," he said.

He also released this statement before the Senate hearing:

“Michiganders  deserve a specific plan on how the Trump Administration plans to clean  up dangerous PFAS chemical contamination, including around military  bases like former Wurtsmith Air Force Base. Oscoda residents and  families across Michigan have waited too long for the Defense Department  and the federal government to respond to PFAS drinking water  contamination. We know how harmful PFAS chemicals are, but the federal  government still needs to do more to protect public health and provide  health care for veterans and others exposed to PFAS chemicals.”

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