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Public comment period extended on 3M wastewater permit

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news Cottage Grove, 55016

Cottage Grove Minnesota 7584 80th Street South 55016

Under pressure from residents still concerned about the contamination of southeast metro area groundwater by 3M Co.-manufactured chemicals, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency on Wednesday announced it would extend the public comment period on a draft permit that regulates wastewater discharge into the Mississippi River from 3M's Cottage Grove facility.

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Originally set to end Wednesday, the period for public comment on the permit will now run through Feb. 18.

"We recognize that many residents are concerned about PFCs in the environment," said MPCA Commissioner Paul Aasen. "Extending the comment period strikes a balance between allowing more time for public review of the draft permit and the need to move forward."

The MPCA had rejected an earlier informal request by the city of Cottage Grove for an extension of the public comment period.

Cottage Grove residents last week turned out in force at a public meeting on the draft the permit, voicing concerns over perfluorochemicals (PFCs) in the area's drinking water, saying the MPCA has acted too slowly in re-issuing the wastewater discharge permit and telling pollution control officials they wanted more time to look at the regulations.

The re-issued permit would regulate the amount of PFCs in wastewater discharged from the facility, and is needed by 3M to move forward with its PFC remediation program.

Comments can be mailed to Scott Knowles, MPCA, Industrial Division, 520 Lafayette Road N., Saint Paul, MN 55155-4194, or e-mailed to scott.knowles@state.mn.us.

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