Residents Question Safety Of PFOA Process - - The News for South Mississippi

Residents Question Safety Of PFOA Process

Is the chemical PFOA harmful to the environment and to people? Some Pascagoula residents fear it is. But officials from DuPonts' First Chemical Plant say it is not.

Tuesday, dozens of people had a chance to meet one on one with experts from First Chemical to talk about their concerns.

The chemical is being shipped from New Jersey and chemically destroyed at the Pascagoula Plant. But a small amount of the PFOA is not destroyed. About two pounds a year will go through the sewer system and end up in the Pascagoula River. That has some people concerned.

But DuPont officials maintain studies have shown, the chemical poses no danger whatsoever to people or the environment.

"The process we are doing is the safest process we have ever done. It is very safe, there will be no adverse harm to the environment or community or the health of the people who live in the community. Much of the info that people are hearing is not correct, it is not fact based," said James Freeman with First Chemical.

"They have gone to numerous communities in the country and promise not to pollute their water and environments, and in months, this is getting out and contaminating the local environment - including wildlife, water bodies and ground water. We are saying we do not want to trust you because you have failed to control it else where," said Becky Gillette with the Sierra Club.

Dupont has invested more than $19 million in the project.

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