2003 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: 14 Mar 2003 15:38:47 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] New Area Near Old Air Force Base Has Contaminated Water
New Area Near Old Air Force Base Has Contaminated Water

A state environmental agency notes a potential risk of it spreading to
residential wells. So what's being done about it and are people in

Domestic water wells have been treated by the Air Force Real Property
Agency. Any well that's for home use is required to have a series of
filters. It's to ensure the contaminates stay out of the mouths of your

For years, Reese A.F.R.P. has been charged with containing a plume of
contaminated ground water that stretches half a mile wide and three
miles long around the old Reese Air force Base.

The contaminant? Trichloroethylene, or TCE. It was used as a degreaser
on aircraft from the 1940's until the base closed 57 years later. TCE
can cause liver and kidney damage and harm unborn babies if consumed,
according to the Centers for Disease Control.

But, in a letter dated January 17th, 2003, the TCEQ wrote to the
A.F.R.P. "...The presence of numerous domestic water wells in the area
just north of Erskine and the potential for these wells to be impacted
if the ground water plume is not stabilized." In other words, the
contamination has spread. Reese environmental officials say to at least
21 new domestic wells.

So why is there a new area of bad water if it's been contained and
controlled all these years? Reese Site Manager Paul Carroll says it's
because farmers are using the bad water from the Ogalala aquifer for
irrigation. "There's a large cotton field where we're standing to the
east. The farmers pull out somewhere between 600 to 900 gallons a minute
during summer. It's a big draw out from the aquifer. This is an area
where it's difficult to get control of so we'll need to install
monitoring wells," said Carroll.

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