Skip to main content
Monthly Archives

June 2022

Fact versus fiction: ‘Forever chemicals’ hazardous substance designation is not a ban

By PFAS in the news

If the Environmental Protection Agency designates the two best studied ‘forever chemicals‘ called PFAS as hazardous substances, manufacturers will not be forced to stop using them.

That’s because the relevant law, the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Liability, and Compensation Act, or CERCLA – better known as the Superfund law – doesn’t regulate use. It regulates cleanup. A CERCLA hazardous substance listing does not prevent responsible manufacturers from continuing to use PFAS. Instead, it governs the cleanup of sites contaminated by the release of hazardous substances and allows the EPA to recover costs from responsible polluters.

The need to clean up historic PFAS contamination has never been so urgent. This month, the EPA concluded that PFAS, which have been linked to cancer and other health harms, are far more toxic than previously thought. Read more…

House subcommittee boosts EPA’s budget to tackle toxic ‘forever chemicals’

By Uncategorized

On Tuesday, a key House subcommittee approved $126 million in the Environmental Protection Agency’s budget for fiscal year 2023 to address the ‘forever chemicals‘ known as PFAS.

If enacted, the funding would represent a 70 percent increase over the paltry sum of $74 million currently in the EPA budget for tackling PFAS contamination nationwide. This would also be the highest level of funding ever provided to the agency to address the PFAS crisis. Read more…

In-Depth: What we know about PFAS in our food

By PFAS in the news

After a much-publicized study this year found high levels of a toxic chemical class in food wrappings, many of us are eyeing that pizza or to-go salad in a new light.

Experts warn, though, that we shouldn’t just be concerned about exposure from packaged food. The compounds, PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, appear to be widespread in our food supply . PFAS have contaminated dairy and beef farms in Maine and Michigan, and recent testing from the consumer wellness site Mamavation found evidence of the compounds in organic pasta saucescanola oils and nut butters. Read more…

EPA warns that even tiny amounts of chemicals found in drinking water pose risks

By PFAS in the news, Uncategorized

The Environmental Protection Agency is warning that two nonstick and stain-resistant compounds found in drinking water pose health risks even at levels so low they cannot currently be detected.

The two compounds, known as PFOA and PFOS, have been voluntarily phased out by U.S. manufacturers, but there are a limited number of ongoing uses and the chemicals remain in the environment because they do not degrade over time. The compounds are part of a larger cluster of ‘forever chemicals’ known as PFAS that have been used in consumer products and industry since the 1940s. Read more…

Breaking: EPA Announces New Drinking Water Health Advisories for PFAS Chemicals, $1 Billion in Infrastructure Law Funding to Strengthen Health Protections

By PFAS in the news, Uncategorized

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released four drinking water health advisories for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in the latest action under President Biden’s action plan to deliver clean water and Administrator Regan’s PFAS Strategic Roadmap. EPA also announced that it is inviting states and territories to apply for $1 billion – the first of $5 billion in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law grant funding – to address PFAS and other emerging contaminants in drinking water, specifically in small or disadvantaged communities. These actions build on EPA’s progress to safeguard communities from PFAS pollution and scientifically inform upcoming efforts, including EPA’s forthcoming proposed National Primary Drinking Water Regulation for PFOA and PFOS, which EPA will release in the fall of 2022.

‘People on the front-lines of PFAS contamination have suffered for far too long. That’s why EPA is taking aggressive action as part of a whole-of-government approach to prevent these chemicals from entering the environment and to help protect concerned families from this pervasive challenge,’ said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. ‘Thanks to President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, we are also investing $1 billion to reduce PFAS and other emerging contaminants in drinking water.’ Read more…