Blogs > Water Quality > Report: Rockland County PFAS drinking water contamination

Report: Rockland County PFAS drinking water contamination


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More than 300,000 Rockland County residents learned in late 2020 that drinking water sources have levels of PFAS chemicals that exceed New York State’s Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) for PFOA. Riverkeeper analyzed the available testing data to produce this report.

Riverkeeper is among the communities and groups that have been advocating for New York State to establish this drinking water standard, to better protect the public from exposure to chemicals associated with a range of illnesses, including cancer, thyroid and reproductive harm and reduced immune response.

PFAS is a class of thousands of chemicals, of which PFOA and PFOS are the best known, following high-profile drinking water contamination events in Hoosick Falls and Newburgh.

The report shows that Rockland County’s water system is complex, with dozens of wells and multiple reservoirs contributing to the water supply. Contamination is widespread in water sources across the county, with multiple PFAS detected. Almost all water sources tested showed evidence of contamination, though most did not exceed New York State’s standards. While New York State has drinking water standards for two of the eight PFAS found, each of the other six PFAS detected is regulated in at least one other state. It’s unclear what the sources of contamination may be. In addition to treating contaminated sources, investigation of potential pollution sources and frequent re-testing of water supplies is needed.

Read the report for more detail >

3 Ways to Take Action!

Rockland County residents can take action on this issue in these ways:
1. Call Governor Andrew Cuomo to tell him that cleaning up Rockland’s water needs to be a high priority: 877-796-1948
2. Sign this petition >
3. Use #CleanWater4Rockland when sharing this blog or other relevant information on social media.

Watch the webinar from 1/7
PFAS Chemicals in Rockland Water: What are the Risks and What Needs to Be Done


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