This week, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a memorandum to states that provides direction on how to use Clean Water Act discharge permits to reduce discharges of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). The guidance outlines how states can monitor for PFAS discharges and take steps to reduce them where they are detected. This action will enable states to reduce the levels of PFAS entering wastewater and stormwater systems and ultimately lower people’s exposure to PFAS through swimming, fishing, drinking and other pathways.
In response, CEO of Waterkeeper Alliance Marc Yaggi released the following statement:
“EPA’s guidance is a critical step forward in our efforts to dramatically reduce PFAS discharges. We encourage EPA to build on these important measures until we have a coordinated national monitoring system and strong regulatory standards for PFAS that meet the scale of the problem.”
This October, Waterkeeper Alliance released a groundbreaking new analysis of American waterways that sounds the alarm on a PFAS pollution emergency. In a test of 114 waterways from across the country, 83% were found to contain at least one type of PFAS, with many revealing the presence of up to 35 different PFAS compounds.