We have extensive efforts underway to address PFAS from our historic actions at our Fire Training Center. PFAS is a ubiquitous challenge, and Tyco takes responsibility for our contribution to the problem. After years of thorough investigation and more than 40 reports submitted to the WDNR, we know that PFAS from our historic operations affected soil on our property, some private drinking water wells in the Town of Peshtigo (specifically 169 wells in an area known as the Potable Water Sampling Area or PWSA), and groundwater under our property and extending to the east and north.
We’ve made a lot of progress in going after this PFAS and fixing the situation. From a $25 million state-of-the-art facility to scrub PFAS out of groundwater, to excavation and removal of affected soils to an out-of-state licensed disposal facility, to working with neighbors to deliver long-term clean drinking water through new deep wells, we are actively solving the problem. Our efforts are thorough and comprehensive, and we believe represent the kind of responsible approach that we hope the many other contributors to PFAS in the environment will also step up and take.
In May 2021, WDNR approved our plan for a Groundwater Extraction & Treatment System (GETS) designed to focus on the area where the vast majority of PFAS is migrating from historic operations at Tyco’s Fire Technology Center (FTC). The GETS extracts groundwater containing PFAS before it upwells into Ditch B, transports the groundwater via underground pipes to a treatment system that removes PFAS from the groundwater, and delivers the treated water, significantly below DNR standards, into Ditch B. The GETS is now operating and successfully treating the groundwater for PFAS before it is discharged into Ditch B. (See GETS fact sheet).
In June 2021, Tyco began excavating and removing soil with PFAS from the FTC. Most of the stored soil from the construction of the Advanced Research & Testing Facility, and the soil with aggregated PFAS from 5 locations in the FTC’s Outdoor Testing Area has been loaded into rail containers and transported out of state for disposal at a permitted facility. (See Soil fact sheet)
Long-Term Drinking Water
In 2022 and after independent engineering studies identified the options available, Tyco engaged with neighbors and offered to build them their preferred long-term drinking water option. Most wanted deep wells, and Tyco got to work.
Installation of deep wells with water treatment systems began in December 2022, and results from the completed installations demonstrate that the treated deep well water is safe to drink. Tyco plans to install about 70 deep wells in 2023 and will continue to install additional wells as requested by property owners in the PWSA.
Other neighbors preferred going through the legal requirements to pursue municipal water from the City of Marinette. Tyco supported those neighbors in that effort, but that effort did not succeed. Tyco then made clear to those neighbors that they can still choose deep wells, and many have done just that. Tyco will install wells for them, as well as treatment systems that include a 20-year maintenance contract – the same package provided to those who originally chose deep wells. (See Deep Well fact sheet)
These remediation plans are based on over 5 years of investigating soil, groundwater, surface water and air to find out how PFAS moved from the FTC and where it went. This included the submittal of over 40 reports with thousands of supporting data, figures, and appendices. We also implemented interim solutions as quickly as possible, including providing bottled water or in-home treatment systems to residents whose drinking water was impacted, and addressing PFAS from the FTC in drinking and surface water while we identified the long-term solutions detailed above. In April 2023, we submitted our updated site investigation findings including final groundwater investigation results that clearly define the boundaries of the area impacted by PFAS from Tyco’s historic operations.