Moose Creek, Alaska
North Wind Site Services was contracted to perform services in support of a voluntary response to address per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in groundwater impacting the residential community of Moose Creek, AK. This body of contaminated groundwater has impacted approximately 167 private, shallow drinking water wells. More than 65 individual private drinking water wells tested exceeded the current lifetime health advisory for PFAS and for perfluorooctanesulfonic acid + perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOS+PFOA).
On this project, North Wind Site Services accomplished the:
- Construction and operation and maintenance of 67 treatment systems as well as the design and installation of 20 new treatment systems at residences in the community.
- Installation of five bulk water storage tanks and delivery of drinking water.
- Collection of more than 800 groundwater/drinking water monitoring samples using Environmental Protection Agency PFAS sampling guidance.
- Maintenance of a 24-hour hotline to respond to system shutdown failures, ensuring residents received a continual supply of potable water.
- Construction of 12 nested boundary monitoring wells 200 feet below the ground surface that are sampled quarterly for PFAS contamination.
- Maintained 150 homeowners right of entry agreements.
The installed treatment systems consist of a range of granular activated carbon filters to adsorb PFAS contamination. The systems were frequently combined with ultraviolet (UV) light treatment systems for bacteria as most of the homes in the community had septic systems and very shallow (> 30 feet) wells. As an added level of protection, an additional carbon filter was installed at each kitchen tap should PFAS break-through occur. Operations & Maintenance (O&M) consisted of inspecting and maintaining water tanks, Granular activated carbon (GAC) treatment systems, and ancillary components; replacing spent carbon in the GAC treatment systems; installing UV systems as necessary; and performing backflush cycles for GAC systems. An average of 100,000 gallons of water per month was treated.
While this project is of medium technical complexity, the coordination and communication with more than 65 residential properties in this unique, remote, Alaskan community was a monumental challenge. North Wind Site Service’s project team developed a comprehensive plan using a database to track all activities and owners, ensuring all systems were operating and residents received safe drinking water, 365 days a year. To execute the plan, the project team had to extensively coordinate/communicate with more than 100 homeowners and tenants; track the status of home ownership, tenant and property management; gain permission for access to each home four times per year; and handle repair call outs due to freezing pipes and system shutdowns 24 hours per day 365 days per year. North Wind staff were in the community more than 250 days per year conducting long-term monitoring, repairs, and new system installations despite extreme winter weather. This comprehensive tracking system ensures that safe drinking water is provided to all residents with minimal complaints or complications.