FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) As of Monday June 8th, 2020, two public water systems, the Knotty Shop, LLC and the Salcha Community well have been tested for contamination in response to an improper waste disposal occurring in Salcha, Alaska which was initially reported to the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (ADEC) on April 23, 2020.
Totes containing High Expansion Foam (HEF) waste, generated during Eielson Air Force Base fire suppression system testing, located at Rolling Stone, Inc. property in Salcha, Alaska. Photo credit: DEC Photo date: 4/23/2020
In addition, private drinking water wells within a quarter mile of the improper disposal locations are currently being surveyed and identified for testing. Alaskans who live within a quarter mile of the Rolling Stone, Inc. gravel pit or Rolling Stone, Inc. Harding Lake gravel pit should expect contact from a contractor surveying private drinking wells.
The improper waste disposal involved contracts managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) in support of F-35 facility mission requirements for the 354th Fighter Wing (354th FW) at Eielson Air Force Base.
Ninety-eight percent of the estimated 33,000 gallons of improperly disposed waste solution consisted of potable water. The remaining 2% was Ansul Jet-X High Expansion Foam (HEF), which was generated from fire suppression system testing at Eielson Air Force Base. The HEF waste does not contain perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) / perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA).
ADEC, USACE and the 354th FW continue to cooperate in an effort to protect environmental and human health. The three organizations say they are working together to determine any potential environmental impacts caused by the improper discharge of waste, and remain committed to providing information to the public, while addressing concerns from residents who may be impacted by this incident.
The improper discharge remains under investigation and testing results will be publicly released when available. A coordinated cleanup response will be established, if necessary, to include drinking water considerations for the local community.
More information is available on the ADEC website.
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