On November 3, Governor Cooper sent a letter to EPA Administrator Michael Regan strongly urging EPA to reverse the decision to allow the import of waste material containing GenX to the Chemours facility in North Carolina.
“North Carolina has been at the forefront of PFAS issues for the past seven years and worked relentlessly to mitigate the health risks posed by these chemicals,” said Gov. Cooper. “It is unacceptable for North Carolinians to bear the risks associated with importing millions of pounds of GenX from other countries for disposal in our air, land and water. Under the Biden Administration, the EPA has been a vital partner in our efforts to learn more about these chemicals and protect the health of our communities and we will continue to encourage them to take action.”
The North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality has expressed concerns and objections directly to the EPA regarding the decision to allow Chemours to import 4,400,000 pounds of PFAS-containing material over the next 12 months from the Netherlands to the Chemours Fayetteville Works Facility.
North Carolina has been a leader in identifying health risks of emerging compounds known as “forever chemicals” that have been discharged into North Carolina’s air and waterways by manufacturers, including Chemours.
Under the Biden Administration, EPA has worked closely with states to set health standards and provide more scientific study and regulatory structure to identify contamination and health risks associated with forever chemicals. DEQ has made clear that allowing the import of these materials does not align with the goals of EPA’s Strategic Roadmap for PFAS or with the state’s ongoing work to address the contamination of the Cape Fear River and the surrounding communities.
DEQ remains invested in the continued reduction and remediation of GenX and related compounds in North Carolina and the Cape Fear River basin.
DEQ is evaluating options to ensure the protection of public health and the continued reduction of PFAS in the environment. The Department continues to monitor Chemours’ actions and work to hold the company accountable for compliance with the strict limits of all permits and provisions of the Consent Order related to GenX remediation.
Read the Governor’s Letter Here.