Public Notice

Public Notice

Brunswick County statement in response to Environmental Working Group January 2020 report

01.22.2020

Brunswick County began an extensive testing program for PFAS contaminants when academic studies revealed the presence of multiple PFAS in its drinking water, testing a suite of PFAS contaminants on a weekly basis. Brunswick County’s water samples have continuously remained below the EPA’s established health advisory levels for PFOA + PFOS and the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services’ established provisional health goal for GenX, however the combined levels of all PFAS is concerning and the County continues to test and monitor for most known PFAS compounds and GenX during its routine testing.

At this time, the EPA does not have an established health goal for several of the other compounds listed in this report that are contributing to the overall 185.9 ppt sample level, however the PFOA + PFOS and GenX sample levels in this report are also below the provisional health goals mentioned above. Due to the fact that little or no study has been done on the health effects of combined PFAS or many of these individual PFAS found in the source water, Brunswick County has taken a proactive approach to install the most protective water treatment system at the Northwest Water Treatment Plant to remove these contaminants.

Brunswick County’s leadership recognizes that high quality water is of paramount importance to our customers and residents and agree that reverse osmosis is the most effective PFAS removal technology, which is why the Board of Commissioners and county administration are embarking on a project to install an advanced low-pressure reverse osmosis treatment system at the Northwest Water Treatment Plant, as well as increase capacity at the plant to support the county’s growth. Brunswick County Public Utilities has been working diligently with engineers at CDM-Smith and the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality to design, permit and build an economical low-pressure reverse osmosis system at the plant for the benefit of all Brunswick County water users.

Low-pressure reverse osmosis is considered one of the most advanced and effective methods to treat and remove both regulated and unregulated materials from drinking water, including GenX, 1,4-dioxane and other per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). In April 2018, the County conducted two rounds of testing on a pilot low-pressure reverse osmosis system at the Northwest Water Treatment Plant. The results showed that low-pressure reverse osmosis reduced most PFAS including GenX to undetectable levels, essentially removing all the components.

Not only do pilot studies indicate that low-pressure reverse osmosis is the most effective advanced treatment method for PFAS removal, but they also indicate that it is the most economical advanced treatment option for the removal of high percentages of PFAS at the Northwest Water Treatment Plant. Most previous studies focus on the high-energy cost when using reverse osmosis for the treatment of saline or brackish water, but the cost is considerably less when used to treat fresh water for PFAS contaminants, especially short-chain PFAS.

All of the County’s water sample test reports are available to the public at https://www.brunswickcountync.gov/genx/

Brunswick County would notify customers and residents should any of its test samples exceed the health advisory levels established for PFOA + PFOS or GenX.

Here’s what you missed at the Brunswick County Board of Commissioners’ Aug. 19 meeting

08.20.2019

Here’s what you missed at the Brunswick County Board of Commissioners’ Aug. 19 meeting

MEDIA RELEASE

BOLIVIA, N.C. – The Brunswick County Board of Commissioners met for their regular meeting this past Monday, Aug. 19 at 6 p.m. Here’s a quick recap of the actions taken on a few selected items from the agenda.

The Board of Commissioners will review and make a motion to accept the official minutes from the Aug. 19 at a later meeting. Once approved, the county clerk will post them online at https://www.brunswickcountync.gov/clerk/agendas/

Presentation
  1. Utilities – Northwest Water Treatment Plant Design Status Update: The Board of Commissioners received a status update on the Northwest Water Treatment Plant Design.
VII. Public Hearing
  1. Planning – Brunswick County Agricultural Development Plan: Following a public hearing, the Board of Commissioners adopted the Brunswick County Agricultural Development Plan with a 5-0 vote.
  2. Planning – Brunswick County Unified Development Ordinance Proposed 2019 Refinements: Following a public hearing, the Board of Commissioners unanimously approved amendments to the Brunswick County Unified Development Ordinance with the Proposed 2019 Refinements (UDO-19-02) with a 5-0 vote.
VIII. Administrative Report
  1. Sheriff’s Office/Detention Center – Reallocation of Capital Outlay Equipment Funds, Reorganization of Detention Supervisors: The Board of Commissioners approved the reallocation of capital-outlay equipment funds and the reorganization of the Detention Center supervisor structure with a 4-1 vote, with Commissioner Pat Sykes voting no.
  2. Operation Services – Disaster Debris Planning and Support Management: The Board of Commissioners awarded the primary disaster debris planning and support management contract to Tetra Tech and the secondary disaster debris planning and support management contract to Thompson Consulting with a 5-0 vote.
  3. Planning – Holden Beach Transportation Corridor Study Steering Committee: The Board of Commissioners approved the establishment of the Holden Beach Transportation Corridor Study Steering Committee and designated Commissioner J. Martin Cooke as the Board’s representative on the committee with a 5-0 vote.

The next regular Board of Commissioners meeting is scheduled for Monday, Sept. 16 at 6 p.m.

To view the full agenda items and accompanying reports, go to https://www.brunswickcountync.gov/clerk/agendas/

More information about the Board of Commissioners meetings is at https://www.brunswickcountync.gov/board-commissioners/faq/

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For media inquiries, contact the Public Information Officer at (910) 253-2995 or email meagan.kascsak@brunswickcountync.gov