U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Warns Against Toxic ‘Forever Chemicals’ in Drinking Water
The US Environmental Protection Agency has issued new warnings about "forever chemicals," which are synthetic contaminants found in drinking water. New research reveals that substances present are significantly more harmful to human health than previously thought.
These substances are known as per-and poly-fluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS. Since the 1940s, these chemicals have been used in consumer and industrial items such as nonstick cookware, stain- and water-resistant textiles, and firefighting foam.
According to scientists, more than 200 million Americans may be drinking PFAS-contaminated water, which has been linked to cancer, liver damage, low birth weight, and other health issues.
In a statement, EPA Administrator Michael Regan said, "People on the front lines of PFAS contamination have suffered far too long."
The EPA plans to submit new guidelines to control PFAS. The advisory is intended to offer information to states, tribes, and water systems about PFAS contamination until the laws take effect.
The EPA also said that it would spend the first $1 billion (€957 million) of the $5 billion (€4.7 billion) set out under the new bipartisan infrastructure law to combat PFAS in drinking water. Technical help, water quality testing, and the installation of centralized treatment systems would be provided by the grants.