GW Intro

PFAS Sites Being Investigated

  • Michigan PFAS Sites Being InvestigatedThe number of sites listed on this page is different than the number listed when the site was first launched on November 13, 2017 because calling a river – such as Gilkey Creek or the Clinton River – a site didn't fit what most people would consider to be a site. So Gilkey Creek and the Clinton River have been moved to a new page called “Lakes and Streams.” Our “Lakes and Streams” page will also highlight all the lake and stream sampling we are doing to identify sources of PFAS. In addition, because a public water supply result is not easily compared to a groundwater result, the five public water supply locations previously listed have now moved to a “Drinking Water” page. We also created a “Wastewater” page to highlight the work of the Industrial Pretreatment Program, which is helping identify other possible PFAS sources.  The three landfill sites, State Disposal Superfund, Coldwater Road Landfill, and Central Sanitary Landfill, along with the Lapeer WWTP, are discussed on the Wastewater page as well. This page will feature groundwater investigations being conducted around the state.

    Groundwater is tested at locations throughout the state by various parties to ensure safety, compliance with regulations, and to proactively detect and remedy potential problems. In 2010, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) discovered levels of Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) in groundwater monitoring wells at the former Wurtsmith Air Force Base. As additional information became available from other national testing, Michigan expanded its investigations into other locations where PFAS compounds were potentially used.

    In 2018, the MDEQ's Remediation and Redevelopment Division (RRD) established cleanup criteria for groundwater used as drinking water of 70 ppt of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS), individually or combined. The RRD staff are responsible for implementing these criteria as part of their ongoing efforts to clean-up sites of environmental contamination. The RRD staff are the lead investigators at most of the PFAS sites on the MPART website and also conduct interim response activities, such as coordinating bottled water or filter installations with local health departments at sites under investigation or with known PFAS concerns. Most of the groundwater sampling at PFAS sites under RRD’s lead is conducted by contractors familiar with PFAS sampling techniques. The RRD also has a Geologic Services Unit, with staff who install monitoring wells and are also well versed with PFAS sampling techniques.

    The MDEQ has been conducting environmental clean-up of regulated contaminants for decades. Due to the evolving nature of PFAS regulations as new science becomes available, the RRD is evaluating the need for regular PFAS sampling at Superfund sites and is including an evaluation of PFAS sampling needs as part of a Baseline Environmental Assessment review.

    Earlier this year, the RRD purchased lab equipment that will allow the MDEQ Environmental Lab to conduct analyses of certain PFAS samples. (Currently, most samples are shipped to one of the few labs in the country that conduct PFAS analysis, in California, although private labs in other parts of the country, including Michigan, are starting to offer these services.) As of August 2018, RRD has hired additional staff to work on developing the methodology and conducting PFAS analyses.

    The map displays sites where the MDEQ has confirmed detections of PFOA and PFOS in groundwater.

Confirmed PFAS Sites

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