Michigan National Guard
Story By Senior Airman Tristan Viglianco & Capt. Andrew Layton
LANSING, Mich. – As a part of an ongoing, nationwide, Air Force-led process, Alpena Combat Readiness Training Center and Battle Creek Air National Guard Base were recently awarded remedial investigation contracts to determine cleanup measures for Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) at the facilities.
The investigations involve collecting data to characterize site conditions, determine the nature and extent of PFAS, and assess risk to human health and the environment. This information is critical for determining the most effective long-term cleanup remedies.
“The information provided by the investigations will be critical in addressing PFAS in and around the bases,” said Col. James Rossi, Alpena CRTC commander. “We are committed to ensuring the health and safety for our Airmen, their families, our Michigan communities and the environment.”
The impact stems from past firefighting utilization of aqueous film forming foam (AFFF). The PFAS-containing foam was used by the Department of Defense between 1970 and 2016 to combat fuel fires.
The installations in Battle Creek and Alpena are two of 11 Air National Guard bases to have the investigation contract awarded in the last fiscal year. The contracts are the next step in the PFAS cleanup process determined by Environmental Protection Agency. The National Guard Bureau will continue to be the lead agency for the PFAS investigations, on behalf of the Air Force.
“Being good stewards of our community’s natural resources is absolutely paramount,” said Col. Shawn Holtz, 110th Wing commander, Battle Creek Air National Guard Base. “We are determined to address the PFAS impact as efficiently and effectively as possible”
The cleanup process is in accordance with the Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act and various other state and federal regulations. In addition to Battle Creek and Alpena, the Michigan Air National Guard is working to mitigate potential and confirmed PFAS at Selfridge Air National Guard Base in Macomb County.
“Michigan is home for all of us,” said Brig. Gen. Bryan Teff, Assistant Adjutant General - Air and commander of the Michigan Air National Guard. “The Michigan Air National Guard is working tirelessly to ensure the health and well-being of our neighbors and protect our environment.”