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Fri, Sept. 25

ADEQ to host meeting on chemical mitigation in Cottonwood

A 6 p.m. public meeting is set for Wednesday in the meeting area at the City of Cottonwood’s Riverfront Water Reclamation Facility. VVN file

A 6 p.m. public meeting is set for Wednesday in the meeting area at the City of Cottonwood’s Riverfront Water Reclamation Facility. VVN file

COTTONWOOD - Wednesday evening, a public meeting is set to take place about the presence of a specific chemical in Cottonwood-area wells.

According to the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality, PCE, or tetrachloroethylene, is a clear, colorless, liquid with a chloroform or sweet odor and a low boiling point; it’s a solvent used for dry cleaning; degreasing and drying metals and other solids; dissolving waxes, greases, oils, fats, and gums; and in other industrial applications.

It’s a potential occupational carcinogen. Wednesday, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., a Community Advisory Board meeting on PCE is set to take place.

It’s at the Riverfront Water Reclamation Facility, 1083 E. River Front Road in Cottonwood. PCE has been a known issue nationwide for years.

According to a 1976 EPA report, the quantity of PCE produced in the U.S. in 1973 totaled 706 million pounds, but by 1993, that output dropped to 271 million pounds.

Evaporation of PCE increases as temperature increases.

Scheduled at Wednesday’s meeting are a presentation on ADEQ site activities, an updated charter review and vote, followed by a community outreach discussion and a call to the public.

The “Highway 260 and Main Street” site has its own Main Street Water Quality Assurance Revolving Fund Community Advisory Board.

The site is generally bounded to the north by the Mingus Avenue, to the south by Mongini Lane, to the east by the Verde River and to the west by South 15th Street, South Main Street and Highway 260.

The site also includes a mixture of public, commercial and residential land uses along State Route Highway 260.

If you own a private well, live in or near the site boundaries, and have not had your well tested, you are encouraged to contact ADEQ. Two samples had a PCE concentration above the Aquifer Water Quality Standard at two locations.

ADEQ has since installed five groundwater monitoring wells and continues to monitor private domestic wells throughout the area. A remedial investigation is ongoing at the site.

The Highway 260 and Main Advisory Board includes several current and former area officials and water treatment specialists.

The co-chairs are Kyla Allen and Bill Wade; also on the board are Roger Biggs, Debbie Breitkreutz, Andrew Groseta, Michael Mathews, David Mongini and Melissa Mongini-Franklin.

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