A new federal study has discovered PFAS - AKA - "Forever Chemicals" have now contaminated 45% of all US tap water, Oklahoma included.

If you don't know, PFAS are lab-developed man-made chemicals used in all facets of American life for the last 80 years... Non-stick cookware, water-repellant clothing, stain-free flooring/carpet, food packaging, etc... They've also been proven to cause a variety of cancers.

What about Oklahoma?

The Sooner State suffers from this contamination too, though we're all just now learning about it. Some cities--Broken Arrow, Nowata, and Bethany--have discovered and are already trying to combat the problem. More will be added to the growing list as we collectively unravel the issue.

The current EPA standard maximum acceptable level of detection among this class of chemicals is an average of 4 parts per trillion.

The drinking water at Fort Sill tested up to 200,000 parts per trillion as recently as 2020. As Fort Sill gets it's drinking water from the City of Lawton, it would be logical to assume Lawton's water is just as toxic.

It's familiar in every military town due to the Camp Lejeune class-action lawsuit that has been all over tv/radio/social media in the last year or two. PFAS contamination has been confirmed at a dozen military installations throughout the states.

It's not just the drinking water...

While it's easy to say to yourself "I'll just drink bottled/purified water from now on," the contamination doesn't stop there. Once it's in us, it's with us forever. If you happen to eat the fish you catch around areas that have been polluted, it's even worse than drinking the water.

Some reports suggest that eating a single fish from a contaminated fishery is equal to drinking PFAS-contaminated water for a month—a lifetime risk of certain cancers. Now you're starting to see why all of the Wichita Mountain lakes surrounding Fort Sill come with a warning.


The soil, water, and fish are all contaminated and nobody can offer a concrete reason why. The EPA speculates that the problem in Lawton/Fort Sill stem from the use of firefighting foams, but how many fires would they have to foam over the last fifty years to boost our PFAS levels to upwards of 200,000 ppt?

Officially, the government infers the mercury contamination is "most likely" from the very short Wichita Mountains gold rush during a time when mercury was used in the process of refining some types of gold.

Due to this mercury contamination, the refuge lakes are regularly listed with many other Oklahoma lakes suffering the same or similar issues, with clear warnings about eating your catch.

The wild variation and locations of mercury-tainted lakes draw doubts on the popular nomenclature that Fort Sill is responsible for the contamination... but mercury isn't the only chemical found in the refuge at or above contamination levels.

That debate shall rage on indefinitely. Even as the state is actively encouraging you to eat species of fish that are regularly found to contain the highest levels of contamination, it's up to you and your gut instinct.

PFAS contamination is a larger problem that we're just now discovering. While the water supply is rumored to be safe in Lawton, these forever chemicals are found in the soil, water, and wildlife all over Oklahoma.


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