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U.S. Geological Survey Completes Nationwide Pyrrhotite Map Following Enactment of Courtney & Larson Amendment

March 30, 2020
Press Release
U.S. Geological Survey Completes Nationwide Pyrrhotite Map Following Enactment of Courtney & Larson Amendment

NORWICH, CT — Today, Congressmen Joe Courtney (CT-02) and John Larson (CT-01) announced that the United States Geological Survey (USGS) has completed its work on research and development of a map showing likely pyrrhotite occurrences across the United States. The map is a critical step towards understanding the true scope and reach of the crumbling foundations crisis, which has already impacted thousands of families in Connecticut and Massachusetts, and was commissioned following passage of an amendment that was authored by Reps. Courtney and Larson, which was included in the Consolidated Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 (H.J. Res. 31).
To view the map and the full USGS pyrrhotite report, click here.

“Concerns about retaining the value of a home are even more important during times of economic uncertainty like these,” said Congressman Courtney. “Homeowners in more than three dozen Connecticut towns have reported that their homes’ foundations are failing due to the presence of the mineral pyrrhotite. We’ve made some progress towards making them financially whole, but we’ve got to make sure that the resources being pulled together for them at the municipal, state, federal, and private levels are in-step with the true scale of this catastrophe. Completion of the pyrrhotite occurrence map by USGS is an important piece of the puzzle – it provides a solid and federally backed base of evidence that this problem is truly widespread, and should warrant serious additional federal resources. Additionally, this map makes clear that pyrrhotite is present throughout the United States, and much work is needed to ensure that other states and localities are not unknowingly utilizing aggregate containing pyrrhotite in construction involving concrete. Congressman Larson and I have worked together to advance several bipartisan efforts to address the crumbling foundations crisis, and we’ll keep pressing forward to ensure that we’ve covered every base necessary for our constituents to get the resources they need.”

“I’m proud to work with Congressman Courtney to address the crumbling foundation crisis in Connecticut. The completion of this study is an important step forward, as it will help show how wide-spread this crisis is, and why these homeowners deserve additional federal support,” said Larson.

The U.S. Geological Survey is the nation's largest water, earth, and biological science and civilian mapping agency. The USGS began work to construct the map of pyrrhotite occurrences across the United States following enactment of H.J. Res. 31 in 2019, which contained two amendments introduced by Reps. Courtney and Larson.

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