Skip to main content
All Posts By

Claire Hayhow

How Biden’s Team Rushed to Dump a Trump-Era PFAS Assessment

By PFAS in the news

“Trump-era EPA appointees engaged in ‘considerable political level interference’ on an assessment for a controversial ‘forever chemical,’ documents obtained by E&E News indicate.

But the Biden administration wasted no time in yanking that document, moving to scrub the assessment of alterations made by political appointees and restore language advocated by EPA career scientists shortly after the president’s inauguration.

At issue is a toxicity assessment for PFBS, part of the per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances family. PFBS is a replacement chemical for PFOS — one of the two most well-studied and controversial PFAS, due to health risks like cancer. The replacement compound, a surfactant, is used in manufacturing processes and to make stain-resistant coatings for various consumer items like clothes, among other purposes. Read more…

Toxic ‘Forever Chemicals’ Contaminate Indoor Air at Worrying Levels, Study Finds

By PFAS in the news

“Toxic PFAS compounds are contaminating the air inside homes, classrooms and stores at alarming levels, a new study has found.

Researchers with the University of Rhode Island and Green Science Policy Institute tested indoor air at 20 sites and detected the ‘forever chemicals’ in 17 locations. The airborne compounds are thought to break off of PFAS-treated products such as carpeting and clothing and attach to dust or freely float through the indoor environment.

Experts previously considered food and water to be the two main routes by which humans are exposed to PFAS, but the study’s authors note that many humans spend about 90% of their time indoors, and the findings suggest that breathing in the chemicals probably represents a third significant exposure route. Read more…

FDA Finds PFAS in Fish Sticks, Tuna and Protein Powder

By PFAS in the news

“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said it detected PFAS chemicals in three of 167 nationally distributed processed foods tested for toxic PFAS chemicals.

PFAS are a family of thousands of manmade chemicals used since the 1940s to produce industrial products resistant to water, oil, grease and stains.

The chemicals have been linked to an increased risk of testicular and kidney cancer, tissue damage in the liver and multiple changes to the immune system and thyroid.

The agency tested the products for more than a dozen of thousands of PFAS chemicals, finding detectable levels in samples of fish sticks, canned tuna and protein powder. Read more…

Congress Presses Forward on PFAS Measures

By PFAS in the news

“In the face of accelerating EPA and state regulatory activity on per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (‘PFAS’)[i], Congress is pressing forward with measures that would address or impose limitations on these ‘forever chemicals.’ More than thirty such legislative measures are currently pending in Congress covering a number of subjects related to PFAS including, but not limited to, those involving military uses, funding assistance, detection and research, product stewardship, site remediation, and regulatory mandates. Of these, the most comprehensive initiative, and the subject of significant public attention, is the PFAS Action Act of 2021[ii], passed by the House last month by a vote of 241-183 with twenty-three Republicans joining their Democratic colleagues in supporting the bill. The measure is now pending in the Senate before the Committee on the Environment and Public Works. While the path forward for this bill in the Senate may be uncertain, it is important to bear in mind that the PFAS provisions of this proposed legislation may be incorporated into other measures such as those addressing infrastructure[iii], spending or defense. Read more…