SINT MAARTEN/THE NETHERLANDS – A majority of MPs say there needs to be nationwide research to find out how much of a potentially carcinogenic chemical known as GenX is in Dutch tap water, the AD said on Monday.
MPs from across the political spectrum have been shocked by research showing the chemical is present in tap water in at least six places in Zuid-Holland province, where a factory using the chemical is located, the paper said.
Although the water is still considered safe, MPs say there needs to be proper research into the scale of the problem. ‘Dangerous substances should never end up in drinking water,’ SP parliamentarian Cem Laçin told the paper.
‘We should look to see if GenX is in drinking water elsewhere. Plus we need money for new investments in purification processes. The pollutor should pay, and that is Chemours.’
GenX is used by the Chemours chemical plant in Dordrecht for the production of the non-stick substance teflon. The AD asked scientists at Amsterdam’s VU University to test tap water from homes in Dordrecht, Rotterdam, Gouda, Goeree, Spijkenisse and Alblasserdam.
Tiny traces of the chemical were found in all the samples, the paper said. The company has a permit to pump 6,400 kilos of waste water containing GenX into the river. In April, the AD reported that officials want the permit changed to reduce the discharge to 2,000 kilos and then a stop altogether.
In May it emerged that blood tests on people living close to the former DuPont chemical plant showed that some have too much of another toxic chemical, C8, in their blood. C8 was used in the production of Telfon until 2012 when it was replaced by GenX. (DutchNews)