Bennington PFOA

A map showing concentrations of PFOA detected east of Bennington, Vermont
Bennington College

Researchers at Bennington College have released data that may show how far a toxic chemical has spread through the air from a closed factory in southern Vermont.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is inviting Vermonters to attend a regional summit on unregulated PFAS chemicals later this month in New Hampshire.

Wikipedia

An article published in Politico earlier this week revealed federal officials sought to block a report on PFAS chemicals, pollutants found in water sources in some local communities. The story is drawing strong reaction from environmental advocates and political leaders.

Officials with the State of Vermont will update Bennington-area residents on the ongoing investigation into PFOA contamination of local water supplies.

Bennington College

Recently, an engineering firm hired by company Saint-Gobain released a more than 5,000-page report detailing its initial findings into groundwater pollution in Bennington, Vermont.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Vermont environmental officials are reviewing a draft report submitted by company Saint-Gobain into soil and groundwater pollution found in Bennington. WAMC’s Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief Lucas Willard attended a meeting Tuesday night where officials provided details on next steps.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Vermont environmental officials will hold meetings Tuesday to provide the latest information to Bennington-area residents about the PFOA contamination of local water supplies and the ongoing response. 

Lucas Willard / WAMC

The first homes in the Bennington, Vermont area with wells contaminated with the chemical PFOA have been hooked up to a clean municipal water system.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Announced Tuesday and filed in state court on Wednesday, Vermont has reached a settlement agreement with company Saint-Gobain to address PFOA contamination in the Bennington area. The agreement will extend clean water lines to approximately 200 homes in the region. Officials were in Bennington to provide details Wednesday night.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Vermont leaders have announced a settlement with Saint-Gobain related to contaminated water supplies in the Bennington area.  As part of the settlement, the company will pay to bring clean, municipal water lines to homes with wells contaminated with the chemical PFOA.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

The Rensselaer County village of Hoosick Falls has hired a renowned environmental attorney for representation as it negotiates with the companies deemed responsible for polluting water supplies. Meantime, efforts to study the chemical PFOA in New York and southern Vermont has gotten a boost from a federal grant.

Bennington College has been awarded a $300,000 grant to continue its studies of PFOA, the chemical that has affected water supplies in Southern Vermont and upstate New York.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Vermont Governor Phil Scott recently signed legislation aimed at holding polluters accountable for contaminating water supplies with the chemical PFOA. WAMC’s Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief Lucas Willard reports the bill may give the state a significant amount of leverage as it negotiates on behalf of people in the Bennington area.

The New York Public Interest Research Group has opened an online database giving residents a shortcut to accessing federal and state test results for contaminants in drinking water.

Two-Day PFOA Conference Touts Whistleblowers

May 22, 2017
JD Allen / WAMC

Last year, Bennington College and Hoosick Falls High School students began researching their regions' similar PFOA contaminations in an effort to calm community concern. Their findings were discussed at a conference at Bennington College over the weekend that featured residents and lawmakers from both regions. 

Wikipedia

Throughout Friday and Saturday, students, scientists, state and local officials, and area residents are exploring the ins and outs of the PFOA contamination of water supplies in Hoosick Falls, New York, and Bennington, Vermont.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Vermont officials traveled to Bennington College Thursday night to give residents an update on the effort to bring clean drinking water to people living with contaminated wells. WAMC’s Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief Lucas Willard reports.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

About one year ago, state health and environmental officials were alerted to and tasked with dealing with the discovery of the chemical PFOA in drinking water supplies in Southern Vermont. WAMC’s Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief Lucas Willard traveled to Bennington last night where the state’s health official revealed results of blood testing conducted over the last year.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

A Vermont judge has denied a motion from Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics to either dismiss or stay the multimillion-dollar class-action lawsuit filed over chemical water contamination.

Lucas Willard

The Village of Hoosick Falls has postponed a meeting scheduled for today where officials were set to consider a settlement offer by the companies deemed responsible for the contamination of local water supplies. WAMC’s Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief Lucas Willard reports on the latest developments in one of the biggest stories of 2016 — and looks back on how we got here.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Story updated 9/29/2016:

The Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation says it is determined to provide clean drinking water to Bennington-area residents with contaminated wells, despite a slowed negotiation process with the company linked to the contamination.

Vermont health and environmental officials are reminding residents in the Bennington area about a meeting this evening to address the chemical contamination of local water supplies. 

A geologist in Vermont is gathering data to help build a 3-D map of the ground underneath Bennington to try to understand how the potentially cancer causing chemical PFOA may be moving through groundwater.

Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin marks the lifting of Pownal's "Do Not Drink" order August 1, 2016.
Jim Levulis / WAMC

Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin says the state is looking to identify a new water source in Pownal after lifting a Do Not Drink order put in place because of chemical contamination.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

The communities of Bennington and North Bennington were changed when PFOA was detected in private wells in February.

State and local officials as well as contracted engineers will hold a public meeting at Bennington College at 5:30 for residents affected by the PFOA contamination found in local water supplies.

Testing for PFOA in drinking water wells will continue in Bennington and North Bennington, Vermont.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has released new health advisories for PFOA and PFOS, the manufacturing chemicals at the center of water contamination crises in several communities in the region including Hoosick Falls, Petersburgh, and North Bennington. The guidelines released today lower the lifetime exposure from drinking water level to 70 parts per trillion. The level of PFOA in affected areas has been much higher than the new benchmark, leading communities to establish alternate water supplies. High exposure can result in cancer, birth defects and other diseases.

Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin’s office has announced results from surface water testing in Bennington and North Bennington, as state authorities are hoping to determine the source and extent of a chemical contamination.

Vermont officials say the results from the first round of water testing in North Bennington has shown widespread contamination among residences near the former Chemfab plant.