Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester and Sens. Tom Carper and Chris Coons, all D-Delaware, sent a letter July 31 to U.S. Department of Defense Secretary Mark Esper urging DOD to expeditiously plan and take action to address the per- and poly-fluoroalkyl contamination recently discovered in certain private and commercial groundwater sources near the northwestern and eastern boundaries of the Dover Air Force Base.

The Delaware Congressional delegation, among other requests, asked for the development of an action plan, if one does not exist, to remediate the current contamination; details of the current investigation, including groundwater testing results and efforts to determine the sources of contamination; and an assessment of the feasibility of providing affected residents and businesses with municipal water sources.

“PFAS chemicals pose a severe public health concern, and we urge the Department and the Air Force to put long-term plans in place for monitoring contamination around Dover AFB and protecting local residents from drinking contaminated groundwater,” wrote the delegation. “A recent analysis by the Union of Concerned Scientists found Dover AFB to have the fourth highest reported PFAS contamination of over 100 tested military installations in the U.S. As experts at Dover AFB acknowledge, contaminated groundwater may migrate and impact other water sources over time. It is imperative that the Department provide the necessary resources to the 436th Airlift Wing to prevent further PFAS contamination and address existing PFAS contamination.”

Text of the letter is available at