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Source: CBS New York

NY Designates Superfund Site At Long Island Air Base

BY MIKE XIRINACHS

Posted: September 13, 2016
Originally Published: September 12, 2016

ALBANY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) — New York authorities have added Long Island’s Gabreski Air National Guard Base to the state’s Superfund list of priority toxic cleanup sites.

The Department of Environmental Conservation has identified the U.S. Defense Department as potentially responsible for contamination of nearby groundwater with PFOS, a component of firefighting foam. The chemical is related to PFOA, which has led to large cleanup actions in upstate Hoosick Falls and Petersburgh.

In July, Suffolk County found contamination in several of 66 private wells tested near the air base in Westhampton Beach. The Superfund designation gives DEC the authority to oversee the military’s investigation and cleanup work.

Monday’s announcement came as state lawmakers were on Long Island for a second joint hearing on statewide water quality issues.

Long Island officials are seeking help from the state to get new sewage treatment systems in an effort to fix the area’s worsening water quality problems, WCBS 880’s Mike Xirinachs reported.

“The reality is that today nearly three out of four homes in Suffolk County are still unsewered,” Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said.

“Fix our existing sewer systems, we need to expand them where it’s appropriate, we also need to trade out the old septics and cesspools that are failing,” environmentalist Adrienne Esposito said. “If we don’t have clean water on Long Island we will not be a sustainable place to live.”

Esposito said now if [sic.] the time to act.

“We’re either going to succeed or we’re going to fail, and water is too important to fail,” she said.

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