EPA Proposes First Consuming Water Requirements for Poisonous PFAS

A glass filled with drinking water.

The Environmental Safety Company (EPA) at the moment proposed the primary nationwide limits on the quantity of six extremely poisonous PFAS chemical compounds allowed in ingesting water. The proposal to control these chemical compounds in ingesting water, the primary new ingesting water requirements from EPA in over twenty years, would cut back folks’s publicity to critical well being dangers and forestall 1000’s of untimely deaths.  

EPA’s proposed requirements cowl six PFAS which have contaminated ingesting water provides nationwide: PFOA, PFOS, PFNA, PFBS, PFHxS, and GenX. For PFOA and PFOS, EPA proposed a binding ingesting water restrict of 4 elements per trillion per chemical. For the opposite 4 PFAS, EPA proposed a binding restrict primarily based on a hazard index designed to deal with these chemical compounds’ cumulative results.  

EPA’s proposed ranges are decrease than New York’s current and proposed PFAS requirements. New York’s Division of Well being (DOH) at present has MCLs for PFOA and PFOS at ten elements per trillion for every chemical. In September 2022, the DOH proposed to control 23 extra PFAS with MCLs and notification ranges increased than EPA’s proposal. 

The next assertion could be attributed to Alok Disa, Senior Analysis and Coverage Analyst for Earthjustice: 

“EPA’s historic proposal to control poisonous PFAS will probably be celebrated by the tens of millions of New Yorkers which were uncovered to those chemical compounds of their ingesting water – Governor Hochul and the Division of Well being ought to observe EPA’s lead and instantly decrease the state’s proposed and current PFAS ingesting water requirements. EPA’s findings affirm what many have lengthy suspected and validates what clear water and public well being advocates have been calling on NYSDOH to do for years – there’s no secure degree of publicity to PFAS and ingesting water requirements should replicate that.  

“From Hoosick Falls, Petersburgh, and Newburgh to quite a few communities on Lengthy Island, too many New Yorkers have reeled from the devastating well being penalties of publicity to PFAS. The Governor’s administration shouldn’t anticipate EPA’s proposal to be finalized however quite ought to instantly direct the Division of Well being to revise New York’s MCLs to finest shield public well being.” 

Background info: 

PFAS are a poisonous class of greater than 12,000 chemical compounds that persist within the surroundings and construct up within the human physique over time. Regardless of their extreme well being results, together with most cancers, reproductive and developmental hurt, and immune system suppression, PFAS stay widespread and are estimated to infect the ingesting water provides of roughly 200 million folks in the US. In 2022, EPA issued well being advisories discovering critical dangers from “any detectable degree of PFOA or PFOS” in ingesting water, with probably the most important dangers to younger youngsters.  

Greater than 95% of the U.S. inhabitants has PFAS of their our bodies, in line with the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention. Firms manufacture PFAS chemical compounds to provide non-stick, waterproof, and different merchandise, together with cosmetics, private care merchandise, meals packaging, and firefighting foam. Business’s widespread use of PFAS has poisoned folks’s ingesting water, a big pathway of publicity to this class of poisonous chemical compounds. Folks ingesting PFAS-contaminated water are vulnerable to experiencing most cancers, thyroid illness, hormone imbalance, and reproductive points. 

The general public well being advantages of EPA’s proposed regulation will far exceed the prices of remediation, and federal and state authorities supplies cash to suppliers. Earthjustice joined companions in calling for New York’s Division of Well being to problem decrease MCLs and notification ranges in December 2022 

Earthjustice is working to finish PFAS air pollution and take away poisonous chemical compounds from our each day lives by combating in courtroom, working with Congress and state legislatures and businesses, and dealing with communities nationwide. 

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