June 20 Update on GenX and Brunswick County

06.20.2017

Local and state officials continue working to gather additional information about the presence of GenX in the Cape Fear River, while at the same time working to stop the discharge of the chemical.

At its June 19 regularly scheduled meeting, the Board of Commissioners passed a resolution requesting that Chemours halt processes which result in the discharge of GenX into the Cape Fear River. The resolution, which is viewable online at www.brunswickcountync.gov/genx, also requests that Chemours maintain a zero discharge policy permanently, or until the NC Department of Environmental Quality and the Environmental Protection Agency conclude any investigations into the effects of the discharge of GenX into the water supply and establish any regulations or guidelines pertaining to acceptable levels, if any are found, in the water supply.

“I’m hoping the State of North Carolina will move forward, or the Federal Government, and put a stop to [the discharging] until this testing is done,” said Commissioner Pat Sykes at the Board meeting.

“Counties in North Carolina are created by the State Legislature, and we only have power conferred by the State Legislature. There are times we want to do something but don’t have the power to do it, and our main impact is pushing state and federal legislators,” added Board Chair Frank Williams.

“It is an economic development issue and people are employed in that county, I understand, but I feel there are other alternative methods for runoff recovery,” said Vice Chair Randy Thompson, who suggested authorizing the county attorney to research options available to the County if Chemours chooses not to stop discharging GenX into the Cape Fear River. A motion to research possible options passed unanimously.

The Commissioners also approved funding for a consultant to provide specialized technical assistance.

Meanwhile, NCDEQ informed Brunswick County that it has begun collecting water samples to be sent to a laboratory in Colorado for testing to determine the presence of GenX. State officials continue to review permit documentation by Chemours, and NCDEQ is reviewing the wastewater discharge application that includes Chemours, Kuraray and the DuPont polyvinyl fluoride resin process, state officials informed Brunswick County.

More information on GenX and the continuing investigation can be found at www.brunswickcountync.gov/genx. As Brunswick County receives additional or evolving information, this webpage will be updated.