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Residents of El Paso County are claiming that the EPA isn’t doing enough about their water contaminated with Perfluorinated Chemicals (PFCs) from Peterson Air Force Base.  See story on CPR HERE.  Peterson shares an airfield with the adjacent Colorado Springs Municipal Airport, home to the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), the Air Force Space Commandheadquarters, and United States Northern Command(USNORTHCOM) headquarters.  Important work going on here.

But the lives of the people on that base and living around it are important too.  Colorado doesn’t provide free blood testing to see if the PFCs allegedly coming from Peterson AFB, but it should.  Other states are aware of the problems posed by PFCs and they DO offer free blood tests.

Some entity – whether its the state, or federal or even municipal — needs to do the legwork and make sure that the very entity meant to protect them from annihilation (Peterson AFB), isn’t slowly killing them instead.  Let’s just put this issue to bed one way or the other, by doing the research!

So what are PFCs anyway?

The “Toxic Free Future” website says:

PFCs “are designed to repel oil, grease and water, but with this special chemistry comes a special problem: they are so highly persistent that scientists call them “virtually indestructible.” With their popularity, they have become global pollutants that threaten the health of people and wildlife.”

The problem is PFCs are in a LOT of the things we use on a daily basis:  raincoats, fast food wrappers, carpet stain protectors. They are used in a wide variety of industries, including aerospace, automotive, building and construction, and electronics.

The PFCs that are contaminating the water for the people of Colorado Springs, supplied by the Widefield Aquifer, are probably from the firefighting foam used in training exercises on the base.  Last year, CPR reported that the Air Force confirmed that the toxins in the form had leached into the community’s groundwater.  See the whole story HERE.

CPR said that a string of Air Force studies and other military research dating to the late 1970s warning of the foam’s danger. The chemicals have been linked to ailments including cancer, liver disease and low infant birth weight.

So … why not distribute some blood testing kits and find out for sure?  It’s not like people can just avoid using water!

— post by Deborah Deal