Aboriginal Affairs Minister Patty Pottle says more research is needed to assess damage caused by pollution left behind in Hopedale by the U.S. Air Force. ((CBC))

Residents of a small town on Labrador's coast have learned more about the pollution left at a former American military site, but have been told more testing is needed.

Hopedale residents were told polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) were found in a residential area in the town, which was used by the U.S. Air Force as a radar station between 1953 and 1968. Hopedale is one of a string of communities that were used by Americans during the Cold War.

At a public meeting in the community Monday night, the Newfoundland and Labrador government revealed results of a consultant's work on testing.

Aboriginal Affairs Minister Patty Pottle, who grew up in Hopedale and still lives there with her family, said the study showed some definite problems.


Hopedale was used by the U.S. military during the Cold War. ((CBC))

"There's some hotspots of PCBs in the area," said Pottle, citing a "dump pond" as one of several examples. 

"[Some were] up on the base and there's a couple up by the dock, a couple of spots down in the residential area, and then there's some hydrocarbons and some metals and things like that."

Pottle said there are concerns that contaminated soil may have been used as fill near homes in the Inuit community, and that residents are worried about the possible pollution of berries, which form a key source of nutrients in the local diet.

Pottle said the government would like to launch more testing within the next month or two.