Bemidji’s water supply needs treatment

By: News Director Larissa Donovan

BEMIDJI– Bemidji city staff will no longer look for a new well to address the PFAs in the water supply.

During a work session last night, the council met with Senior Civil Engineer Brian K. LeMon from Barr Engineering and followed his recommendation to move forward with constructing a temporary water treatment facility.

Attempts to find a new well at the airport were unsuccessful, according to LeMon.

According to City Engineer Craig Gray, another well was shut down last month due to higher than recommended levels of PFAs, a chemical related to Teflon that was once used in firefighting foam in trainings at the airport.

Costs for the new short-term water treatment plant range between $1.9 and $2.3 million, depending on the type of treatment process.

Barr Engineering’s assistance in following National Contingency Protocol would cost an additional $30,000, plus design work of a Minnesota Pollution Control Agency approved remedy design would cost another estimated $230,000.

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