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Update: GenX Found in Nearly Every Home Tested in North Carolina


A team of researchers from North Carolina State’s Center for Human Health and the Environment provided updates to concerned citizens during an event in Wilmington, NC, last month. The event focused on the ongoing issues of GenX and other fluorochemicals finding their ways into the drinking water in North Carolina.

We previously reported on this issue back in April, when we learned that the company Chemours has been releasing GenX and other hazardous chemicals into the Cape Fear River using a water permit that has drawn harsh criticism from people living in the affected area.

After public outcry the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences issued a $275,000 grant to the team of N.C. State researchers to evaluate the extent of the GenX contamination, along with 16 other fluorochemicals that Chemours is believed to be releasing into public water from their Fayetteville Works facility.

During the event in Wilmington three professors who are part of the research team announced that nearly every residence where they tested the tap water tested positive for GenX and other fluorochemicals. As part of their investigation researchers are testing drinking water and the blood and urine of residents to determine how the chemicals affect the body. The results of the blood and urine tests have not yet been released to the public, and may not be completed.

The group of researchers stated that they will invite some of their original participants back to complete a second round of blood and urine tests, in order to measure the presence of the chemicals over time. They hope to have these results completed and released by the end of the summer, they said at the event.

Detleff Knappe, one of the researchers at the event, noted that a certain level of the chemicals would likely remain within the waterways even after the release of the chemicals has been completely halted. “That will persist for probably decades,” he stated.

As we relayed in our previous coverage, no water filtration systems have been certified to remove GenX at levels that comply with federal guidelines. However, Knappe advised homeowners that reverse osmosis systems are “the most effective method for removing GenX and other industrial contaminants.”

The semipermeable membrane inside any reverse osmosis water filter removes many microscopic contaminants and impurities. To learn more about the science behind our 6-Stage Reverse Osmosis Water Filter visit our education page.

According to Knappe, “activated carbon is also effective” in reducing the amount of GenX in your home drinking water. If you can afford two lines of protection your best bet is a Whole House Water Filter coupled with a Reverse Osmosis system in your kitchen. A Whole House Water Filter utilizes activated carbon media and other filters like a sediment pre-filter to reduce as many contaminants as possible before you drink a drop.

The three researchers at the event were asked if they would take steps to seek out alternate water sources if they lived in Wilmington, and they answered affirmatively. However, the researchers did acknowledge the immense inconvenience of obtaining safe water from sources like CFPUA’s water stations. To avoid disruption in your daily routine the best option is to opt for filtration from Pelican Water.

Pelican Combo System Salt-Free Water Softener Whole-House Water Filter