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Air Force: Restoring Water at Former Pease Base Could Take 'Decades'

Members of the 157th Air Refueling Wing await activation in 2009 at the now closed Pease Air Base. (Air Force photo/Laura Suttles)
Members of the 157th Air Refueling Wing await activation in 2009 at the now closed Pease Air Base. (Air Force photo/Laura Suttles)

PORTSMOUTH, N.H. -- An Air Force official told members of the Pease Restoration Advisory Board that it will most likely take "decades" to restore water to acceptable standards at the former Pease base.

Peter Forbes, environmental engineering program manager for the U.S. Air Force Civil Engineer Center, also told board members Tuesday night that the Air Force has spent about $15 million in addressing water contamination at the base over the last two years.

The Portsmouth Herald reports the city of Portsmouth closed the Pease base's Haven well in May 2014 after high levels of perfluorooctane sulfonic acid were found in its water supply.

The federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry says studies have shown that PFC exposure may be linked to several health risks, including cancer.

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