But for environmentalists and at least one member of the School Committee, Dr. Tim Lepore, the jury is still out. The concern is over the turf field, and not only the potential for environmental harm to the groundwater from chemical leaching, but an allegation that the school has attempted to keep scientists from speaking on the issue.
“This is a very critical point because we keep talking about the safety of athletes, which is absolutely of utmost concern, but you also have to think about the safety of the island,” said Kyla Bennett, director of public policy for New England PEERs (Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility). Bennett is one of the scientists approached by the Nantucket PFAS Action Group to speak about the dangers of PFAS.
“You are on a sole-source aquifer, and if you contaminate your aquifer with more PFAS, it’s yours forever and you cannot get rid of it easily,” she said.