ATSDR releases final Pease International Tradeport report

Friday, March 20, 2020
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ATLANTA, GA - The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) has released its final health consultation report, “Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) in the Pease Tradeport Public Water System,” in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. The public comment version was released on April 1, 2019.

The health investigation found that workers at Pease International Tradeport and children attending the childcare centers were exposed to PFAS in contaminated drinking water. Those exposures occurred from 1993 until the Haven well was shut down in May 2014. People exposed to drinking water from the Pease Tradeport Public Water System (PWS) during this period might be at increased risk for some harmful non-cancer health effects such as developmental (growth and learning) and immunological diseases.

The study evaluated whether drinking water from the Pease Tradeport Water System containing PFAS posed a health threat to people who drank it any time since 1993. The final report incorporates any responses to comments received during the public comment period in 2019. ATSDR’s overall conclusions and recommendations from the original report (public comment version) remain the same.

The specific PFAS formulation in the aqueous film-forming foam (AFFF) used at the former Pease AFB is not known. ATSDR used a conservative approach to evaluate concentrations of 23 PFAS in drinking water wells.

Although the Haven well was shut down, low levels of PFAS remain in the water serving the Pease Tradeport PWS. Consuming water containing low levels of PFAS at Pease is not expected to harm people. As a prudent public health measure, persons who have had long-term exposures to PFAS should be aware of ways to reduce further exposures. Information on ways to reduce exposures to all sources of PFAS is available at https://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/pfas/pfas-exposure.html.

To read the report, visit: https://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/HAC/PHA/HCPHA.asp?State=NH.

Copies of the report can also be reviewed at:

Portsmouth Public Library
175 Parrott Avenue
Portsmouth, NH 03801

Langdon Library
328 Nimble Hill Road
Newington, NH 03801

Weeks Public Library
36 Post Road
Greenland, NH 03840

For more information about ATSDR’s Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) in the Pease Tradeport Public Water System final report, community members can call 1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636), email www.cdc.gov/info or visit https://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/sites/pease/index.html.

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ATSDR, a federal public health agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, evaluates the potential for adverse human health effects of exposure to hazardous substances in the environment.


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Related News Releases For Rockingham County, Portsmouth, New Hampshire


Release Date:  Wednesday, February 17, 2016
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), a federal public health agency, is seeking volunteers to serve as members of the Community Assistance Panel (CAP) for Pease.  ATSDR is evaluating the public health impact of drinking water contaminated with perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) at the Pease site and nearby wells. The CAP is a way for the community to participate directly in ATSDR’s health activities related to exposures to the drinking water at the Pease International Tradeport site.

Release Date:  Friday, July 30, 1999
The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (NHDHHS) announced today the availability of a draft version of the public health assessment for the former Pease Air Force Base in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. NHDHHS completed this draft public health assessment as part of its cooperative agreement with the U.S. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR).


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Page last reviewed: March 20, 2020