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Sunday, September 12, 2021

PFAS Topic of Navy Restoration Board Meeting

PFAS

The US Navy held a virtual Restoration Advisory Board meeting for Naval Research Laboratory – Chesapeake Bay Detachment on May 18, 2021.

The NRL-CBD RAB, established in 2019, is a community advisory group that provides a forum for the Chesapeake Beach community, Naval Support Activity Annapolis, and Maryland regulatory agencies to work together to encourage discussion and the exchange of information.

The minutes from the meeting can be found here.

“The RAB is an important tool for the Navy to obtain community concerns and provide input into environmental restoration,” said CAPT Homer Denius, NSAA commanding officer. “We want to ensure that we stay committed to transparent communication and partnership with the community.”

CAPT Denius went on to say that the RAB is the best forum for the Chesapeake Beach community to obtain the most accurate and timely information on the Navy’s environmental restoration program.

The virtual meeting was attended by Navy and regulatory agency representatives, local community members, and residents in the vicinity of Chesapeake Beach.

Some of the topics included updates on the Navy’s environmental restoration projects at NRL-CBD as well as a question-and-answer session with representatives from the Navy, the US Environmental Protection Agency, and the Maryland Department of the Environment.

According to Ryan Mayer, Naval Facilities Engineering Command Washington remedial project manager for NRL-CBD and RAB co-chair, the bi-annual meeting is still in its initial stages.

“The NRL-CBD RAB is just getting started,” Mr. Mayer said. “Our goal is open and effective communication with the community on the environmental restoration program. We are going to publish RAB meeting minutes on the NRL-CBD public website, and we are also working on a Frequently Asked Questions link so the community can see our responses to many of the questions we have been receiving.”

During the May 18 virtual forum, members of the Chesapeake Beach community raised numerous questions relating to the Navy’s per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, and their impacts on the surrounding communities.

“The PFAS impacts are currently under environmental investigations, and we are actively working with impacted communities throughout the PFAS assessment process and public meetings such as the RAB,” Mr. Mayer said.

Mr. Mayer also emphasized that the public should seek the most up-to-date and authoritative information about the restoration program from official US government sources or regulatory agencies such as the MDE or the Environmental Protection Agency.

The next RAB meeting is scheduled for October 2021.

For more information on the NRL- CBD, click here.

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