Those traveling along Rte. 9 and on the Cochituate Rail Trail for now have an impressive new industrial sight to behold: Hulking white filters designed to put their granulated activated carbon up against the nastiest forever chemicals in Natick’s public water supply.
Natick discovered elevated levels of Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) in the town’s drinking water during the process of getting a new well online in 2020. Since then the town has been taking actions, including a water ban and tapping wells usually off limits at certain times, to mitigate the problem.
The filters, located at the Springvale Water Treatment Plant, should be in action by late February according to a town update on PFAS.
Supply chain issues delayed a hoped-for November or December launch. The filters, from an outfit called TIGG, will soon be masked within a metal building, then some piping and electrical work will need to be done to get them online.
The filters, funded through a $3M capital appropriation at Spring Town Meeting and emergency funding through the state, are designed to extract PFAS from 2 million gallons of water a day and allow the plant to pump out 4 million gallons of water by mixing in other clean water.
Natick has also begun researching the cause of PFAS in the water, and neighboring Wellesley is reviewing a proposal to do likewise, with plans to share findings.
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