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HOME  > Past issues  > 2023 November 8 - 14  > US researcher and VFP survey PFAS contamination near US bases in Okinawa
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2023 November 8 - 14 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

US researcher and VFP survey PFAS contamination near US bases in Okinawa

November 9, 2023
A U.S. leading environmental researcher dealing with military pollution issues, Pat Elder, on November 8 published a report on PFAS testing he conducted together with Okinawan activists and researchers at 18 locations near U.S. bases in Okinawa.

The survey was organized by the Veterans for Peace (VFP) Okinawa and conducted in mid-September.

According to the report, perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) were detected at 236.5 nanograms per liter and 316 nanograms per liter, respectively, from leachate samples taken near a private disposal site for U.S. military’s waste adjacent to the U.S. Kadena base (Kadena Town, Chatan Town, and Okinawa City). The combined PFOS/PFOA levels were about 11 times greater than the Japanese government-set standards.

Furthermore, along with PFOS and PFOA, 25 types of PFAS, including perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHxS), a suspected risk factor for developing type 2 diabetes, were discovered from the same samples. The total combined level of PFAS reached as much as 1450.9 ng/L.

The report demanded that the Japanese government survey how hazardous per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) affect soil, underground water, air, and aquatic organisms across the country and set up rules and regulations to prevent further contamination.
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