Chemours can continue discharging wastewater under the terms of its current permit, but state officials are monitoring the chemical company's actions and reviewing Chemours' permit renewal application.
According to a news release sent Tuesday afternoon, the NC Department of Environmental Quality sent a letter to Chemours to make sure it executes remedial measures required by DEQ.
On Sept. 5, DEQ put Chemours on a 60-day notice, stating it would suspend Chemours’ current wastewater discharge permit if the company failed to stop releasing fluorinated compounds into the Cape River.
A Bladen County court reinforced the state’s demands in a partial consent order issued Sept. 8 that required Chemours to stop the discharge of GenX and Nafion byproducts in areas of the facility where they had been identified.
Since then, Chemours has agreed to stop the release of additional industrial process wastewater containing per- and polyfluorinated compounds that were identified after the state’s action on Sept. 5. As it states in Tuesday’s letter to Chemours, DEQ is conducting ongoing water quality monitoring to ensure the state’s required measures are being implemented.
If at any time the company fails to meet the state’s demands to stop releasing fluorinated compounds into the Cape Fear River, DEQ said it will take action.
“People deserve to know the water they are drinking is safe, and we are doing everything in our power to make sure it is,” DEQ Secretary Michael Regan said in Tuesday's news release. “We have ordered Chemours to stop releasing these compounds and we will continue to scrutinize the company’s actions to ensure they are meeting all of our demands to protect water quality.”
Concentrations of GenX in finished drinking water continue to be below the state’s public health goal since this summer when Chemours was prompted by pressure from state and local officials to stop the discharge of GenX into the Cape Fear River.
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