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Forever Chemicals on the Ski Trail: A Conversation with Gail Carlson

Fluorinated glide wax is used in winter sports to increase a skier or snowboarder’s speed by reducing friction. Commonly used in Nordic ski racing since the 1980s, this wax produces speed with a key chemical ingredient known as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS. PFAS are called “forever chemicals” because they persist in landscapes, food chains, and human bodies. Dr. Gail Carlson’s new study in Chemosphere, co-authored with her student and Nordic ski racer, Skylar Tupper, is the first to evaluate the occurrence, persistence, and mobility of PFAS at an area used for ski racing in the United States. Read more…