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A town’s water is contaminated with ‘forever chemicals’ – how did it get this bad?

On a bitterly cold afternoon earlier this year, the Haw River was running high – its water a bright ochre thanks to heavy rainfall and snow melt.

Most of the water flowed south, where it would eventually connect with Jordan Lake and the rest of the Cape Fear River basin, home to the cities of Greensboro, Durham, Fayetteville and Wilmington and a major source of drinking water for the eastern half of the state.

But some of it took a sharp turn, pumped up to the local water treatment plant where it was cleaned and filtered before continuing its journey, piped down the road and into a church in downtown Pittsboro where Jim Vaughn had just finished helping hand out free lunches.

Vaughn, a retired electrical equipment salesman and longtime Pittsboro resident, had found a problem with the water coming out of the church’s tap – contamination with a group of chemicals that are linked to health concerns. Read more…