Department of National Defence is working to address chemical pollution in North Bay
NORTH BAY -- 22 Wing, the armed forces base in North Bay, is working to fix a potentially dangerous problem with chemical pollution.
The chemicals in question are per- and polyfluoroalkylated substances (PFAS), used in industrial and consumer products at the base and in training situations at the local airport from the early 70's to the mid 90's. Products include firefighting foam.
Testing found that most drinking water was safe, but two local wells had PFAS levels higher than Health Canada's recommended limits.
"We want to do more testing and we have quarterly testing of the wells, as well as the groundwater and surface water, because the more information that we obtain, the better we are equipped to then remediate," said Captain Leah Pierce, public affairs officer of 22 Wing North Bay.
The Department of National Defence (DND) says it's working with the city, local health unit, and the province to see if federal funding is available to fix the airport property.
Pierce says since 2017, affected residents have been informed and provided with bottled water until their homes were connected to the municipal water supply.
Water quality tests and the monitoring of PFAS levels will continue over the coming year.