Cape Fear Public Utility officials say they can no longer trust Chemours to control discharges from its site.
In a statement issued early Wednesday evening, officials say North Carolina’s Department of Environmental Quality informed CFPUA that as late as December, regulators measured levels of GenX in the Cape Fear River near the plant at 2,300 parts per trillion. That’s far higher than the established human health goal of 140 parts per trillion.
GenX is an unregulated perfluorinated compound that could be harmful to human health. In November of last year, state regulators told the manufacturer of GenX, Chemours, that they would no longer be permitted to discharge the compound into the Cape Fear River.
CFPUA’s Sweeney Water Treatment Plant is currently unable to remove the compounds from the drinking water—underscoring the importance, say officials, of strict regulatory action and discharge control at the state level.
CFPUA is currently operating a pilot test to investigate the potential to remove compounds such as GenX from the water. Officials say they'll continue weekly sampling of the finished water at Sweeney Water Treatment Plant and will make those results available to the public as they come in.