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U.S. Air Force working toward innovative groundwater cleanup solution

The United States Air Force is working closely with leading academic researchers to solve a global challenge: cleaning groundwater contaminated with Perfluorooctane Sulfonate and Perfluorooctanoic Acid, known as PFOS and PFOA.

The Air Force Civil Engineer Center’s Broad Agency Announcement program began the charge toward finding better, faster and more sustainable solutions for cleaning groundwater contaminated with PFO

S and PFOA in 2011. Since then, AFCEC has awarded more than $7M in contracts for innovative technologies to better understand and remediate the two chemicals, said Monique Nixon, AFCEC BAA coordinator.

PFOS and PFOA are two manmade chemicals found in many products around the world, including firefighting foam formerly used by the military and commercial airports to combat petroleum-based fires. The chemicals were also used widely in many water and stain-resistant products including nonstick cookware, stain-resistant fabric and carpet, and food packaging.

“Most people have been exposed to (PFOS and PFOA),” according to the Environmental Protection Agency, and researchers are beginning to study long-term health effects. The EPA issued a provisional short-term health advisory for the chemicals in 2009, followed by a drinking water health advisory in 2016. Read More>>>

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