MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The city of Woodbury is speeding up the construction of a temporary water treatment facility to clean wells contaminated by chemicals from 3M.
The Woodbury City Council made an emergency declaration at its Wednesday meeting to ensure a temporary treatment facility is up and running by summer, when the city sees peak water demand.
According to the Pioneer Press, the declaration will allow the city to obtain about $5 million to build the temporary plant, which will be located in the Tamarack well field north of Valley Creek Road.
Currently, six of Woodbury’s 19 wells are closed because they exceed standards for PFAS, or perfluorochemicals. The chemicals were produced by 3M from the 1940s until 2002 and disposed at multiple sites in Washington County, affecting wells in cities like Woodbury and Cottage Grove.
Water in Woodbury remains safe to drink, the city says. The temporary treatment center is needed to clean three of the polluted wells to ensure there is enough pressure to meet high demand during the summer months.
The temporary treatment center is expected to be in operation until a long-term water treatment solution can be implemented. Funds for the long-term solution are expected to come from a $270 million settlement between the state of Minnesota and 3M.