August 1st, 2019
We are closely following communities west of Littleton where a family of chemicals called per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, have recently been found at levels exceeding EPA and MassDEP guidance values. While there is currently no state or federal standard, the EPA and MassDEP recommend that PFAS concentrations in drinking water not exceed 70 parts per trillion (ppt).
LWD voluntarily tested our three well sites for the presence of PFAS and the results showed all three locations were under the current federal and state guidance values. Littleton’s water continues to meet all the federal and state guidelines for safe drinking water.
Nonetheless, LWD is looking into options to increase treatment of the water from the Spectacle Pond well site where test results, received Monday, showed PFAS levels at 28 parts per trillion (ppt). While substantially below the current 70 parts per trillion (ppt) guideline, LWD is conducting further testing to monitor and validate the data, and we have started analyzing options for installing treatment equipment to remove PFAS.
The tests showed no PFAS at the Whitcomb Avenue well sites, which provides half of the water supply. The Beaver Brook well sites tested for trace amounts of PFAS. We will continue to test for the presence of PFAS at these sites, but do not feel further action is needed at this time.
LWD has a mission to deliver clean and reliable water, and we are always concerned when manmade pollutants threaten our water supply. LWD’s immediate next steps include:
- Ongoing communication with MassDEP for guidance and technical expertise.
- Additional water quality testing.
- Retaining a water quality engineering firm to develop treatment options.
- Collaborating with the Ayer Water Department to share information and possible solutions.
- Provide a further update to our customers by the end of this month.
If you wish to learn more about PFAS, which is an emerging issue both in Massachusetts and across the nation, visit the MassDEP website:
Nick Lawler General Manager