SGS PFAS Update XLIV: PFAS News for Environmental Professionals

With articles relevant to Canada and the United States, and 10 U.S. states reporting in on PFAS-related stories, this 47th SGS PFAS Update is full of the news that keeps environmental professionals up to date on all ‘forever chemicals’ issues. You can read how a Canadian university is examining the country’s water systems to identify and treat PFAS, California’s legislation considered to be the U.S.’s toughest restrictions on PFAS, the Illinois town spending $13 million to eradicate PFAS and so much more.

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United States and Canada
Toxic ‘Forever Chemicals’ Found in School Uniforms in Canada and U.S.: Study

Your kids might now have a more legitimate reason to complain about their uniforms: a new peer-reviewed study has discovered high levels of toxic PFAS in stain-resistant school uniforms across Canada and the U.S.

University of Waterloo Leads Team Investigating ‘Forever Chemicals’ in Canadian Water Systems

University of Waterloo is leading an interdisciplinary team to identify and treat PFAS – better known as forever chemicals – in water systems affecting more than 2.5 million Canadians.

How Insurers Can Trim Their Environmental Remediation Costs – Canadian Underwriter

Insurers can trim their environmental remediation costs by shopping around for more than one site estimate, recommends Lori Festarini, environmental director at Charles Taylor.

Dollarama Children’s Products Allegedly Contain Toxic Heavy Metals

A new study published in late August by Environmental Defense found the presence of heavy metals, such as lead, and other toxic chemicals in children’s items sold at Dollarama and Dollar Tree. The report revealed the presence of phthalates, bisphenols and “eternal chemicals” or PFAS in a variety of foods, toys, and children’s items.

EPA Proposes to Stop Authorized Use of Certain PFAS in Pesticide Products

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to remove 12 chemicals identified as PFAS from the current list of inert ingredients approved for use in pesticide products to better protect human health and the environment.

With PFAS in Packaging, How Safe Is Microwave Popcorn?
Munching handfuls of microwave popcorn might be perfect for movie night, but your snack could be loading your body with potentially harmful “forever chemicals,” experts warn.

California Lawmakers Pass Sweeping PFAS Disclosure Measure, Textile Restriction
A bill to end the use of PFAS in new fabrics and textiles in California was passed by the Assembly Tuesday.

Delaware Bolsters Testing for PFAS Chemicals in Drinking Water

Delaware officials updated a list of sites where they are testing for so-called forever chemicals, naming 15 locations where aquifers supplying public water systems are being sampled for the toxic substances.

Northwestern Professor Takes On ‘Forever Chemicals,’ And He Just Might Win
Dichtel and colleagues in his lab have come up with a simple, inexpensive method to destroy the harmful and ubiquitous contaminants called PFAS, known as “forever chemicals” because they don’t break down in the environment or the human body.

Illinois Town’s $13 Million Water System Will Remove All Toxic PFAS
Freeport is a small industrial city of 24,000 in northwest Illinois. For a price tag of $13 million, it’s building a new water system to tap deep into new, uncontaminated water sources.

Officials Didn’t Warn of Contaminated Water in this Ky. City
Nearly three years ago, state officials found toxic “forever chemicals” polluting the drinking water in the city of South Shore at higher concentrations than anywhere else in Kentucky.

Kentucky Issues Advisory to Limit Local Fish Consumption Over Potential Cancer-Causing Chemicals
State regulators have issued an advisory for people to consider limiting how much fish they eat from lakes and rivers in Kentucky because of contamination by chemicals linked to cancer and other health problems.

PFAS Not Detected in Greater Portland Water
The Portland Water District recently tested public water in Greater Portland for PFAS in August, also known as forever chemicals. According to a news release issued by the Portland Water District on Thursday, no PFAS was detected in the water. There were 25 compounds tested for PFAS, and all showed up negative.

Officials are Testing Soil and Groundwater to Determine Extent of PFAS Contamination at Bangor Base

The Department of Defense said it has evidence of PFAS contamination in the groundwater and soil of the Maine Air National Guard Base in Bangor. The likely source is Aqueous Film Forming Foam, a fire retardant the Air National Guard started using at the base in the 1970s.

A Maine Company is Pioneering Ways to Remove PFAS

As towns begin to look for solutions to get forever chemicals out of their waste streams and drinking water supplies, a Maine company is pioneering work on ways to remove the toxic compounds and apply technology that can destroy them in real-world situations.

AG’s Office Files Lawsuit Over PFAS Contamination at Sites in West Michigan
The Michigan Attorney General’s office has filed a lawsuit to try to force a company to clean up contamination from harmful PFAS chemicals in West Michigan. The lawsuit is over pollution at nine sites that were formerly owned by the Keeler Brass Company.

Michigan Property Owners Settle PFAS Case for $54 Million
A judge has given tentative approval to a $54 million settlement involving 3M Co., a shoe manufacturer and property owners in western Michigan who said their land and wells were contaminated by toxic “forever chemicals.” 

New York
Almost Half a Million New Yorkers Drinking PFAS-Polluted Water, Left Out of Current and Proposed NYS Protections
Advocates urged Gov. Kathy Hochul and the NYS Department of Health (DOH) to bring New York’s drinking water standards on toxic PFAS in line with new EPA health advisories.

North Carolina
Discharge Permit Requires Chemours Remove 99.9% of PFAS
The North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality’s Division of Water Resources issued the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System, or NPDES, permit Thursday for a granular activated carbon, or GAC, filtration treatment system. The system is to treat groundwater, surface water and stormwater contaminated by PFAS before it can reach the Cape Fear River, a drinking water source for hundreds of thousands in the Wilmington area.

Elevated Cholesterol Found in GenX Exposure Study Participants
In a new paper detailing findings from North Carolina State University’s GenX Exposure Study, researchers found that elevated levels of PFAS were associated with higher total cholesterol and non-HDL cholesterol in participants’ blood.

Study Finds Dozens More Homes have PFAS Contaminated Water Near Yakima Training Center

A third round of testing done by the U.S. Army testing water in surrounding homes found that another 31 homes have unhealthy levels of PFAS in the Yakima Valley.

Saukville Warning Residents about High Levels of ‘Forever Chemicals’ in Drinking Water
Saukville is asking residents to use caution when drinking or cooking with their tap water after toxic “forever chemicals” were found in several of the village wells.