Wednesday, February 26, 2020

EPA takes a baby step toward regulating PFAS

Posted By on Wed, Feb 26, 2020 at 1:00 AM

  • Jana Shea /

The Environmental Protection Agency took another step toward regulating two chemicals in the toxic, man-made PFAS group: perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA).

The agency’s preliminary regulatory determination on the two chemicals is open for public comment through mid-April. 

It could be a long time before public utilities have to comply with EPA limits on PFOS and PFOA in drinking water, according to nonprofit advocacy organization Environmental Working Group (EWG).

“States should not wait for the EPA to act,” Melanie Benesh, EWG’s legislative attorney, said in a statement. “It will be years — if ever — before a final drinking water standard is set.”

Last year, the Colorado Legislature passed a bill banning the use and sale of PFAS-containing firefighting foam, with exceptions. Another bill that was introduced in January addresses when PFAS foam may be used for training and would give the state more authority to regulate the chemicals.

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