Featured Concerns for Ottawa County

Concerns for Ottawa County

Toxic PFAS can have incredibly harmful affects on your health.
The full impacts of PFAS exposure and contamination are still being studied, and will be for years to come. These invisible chemicals are a problem for humans of any age and for all living creatures. This is because PFAS collects in our bodies over time and can take years to leave. Because we are often exposed to different types of PFAS, they continuously add up in our bodies and in our bloodst…

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Do you know about toxic PFAS foam on lakes and rivers?
This summer, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services recommends that Michiganders avoid foam on Michigan lakes, rivers, streams, and beaches. Foam can contain harmful chemicals, including high levels of PFAS. Natural foam is usually off-white or brown in color with an earthy or fishy scent, and collects in bays or dams. But foam that contains PFAS is typically a bright white col…

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How does PFAS impact farming and agriculture?
In April 2022, a new report released by a nonprofit group called Environmental Working Group determined that up to 20 million acres of farmland across the United States are contaminated with PFAS. The state of Michigan has nearly 10 million acres of farmland, and Ottawa County has 171,883 acres of farmland or food cultivation areas. Sadly these lands are not immune to the toxic effects of PFAS…

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How does PFAS affect our drinking water?
Some drinking water wells may have PFAS in amounts that are high enough to cause concern for human health. About 75% of Michiganders get water from a public water supply. The rest of the state gets their water from private wells. Both can become contaminated by PFAS, so it is important to stay informed about drinking water in Ottawa County. There are strict drinking water standards that put a …

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How does the presence of PFAS affect children?
There are many unknowns about the impacts of PFAS, but recent studies suggest that children are even more negatively affected by PFAS contamination than adults. In Ottawa County, 5.7% of the population are children under the age of 5 that could potentially be exposed to PFAS every day. With 5 contamination sites in Ottawa County, this presents potential for exposure to children. Kids encoun…

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