New Jersey proposes PFAS regulations for groundwater; EPA regulations delayed by shutdown

fresh water

SUSAN PHILLIPS / STATEIMPACT PENNSYLVANIA – The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection has taken a step toward cleaning up water contamination from an unregulated class of perfluorinated chemicals known as PFAS.

The toxic chemical is used in the manufacture of non-stick cookware, stain resistant clothing and firefighting foam. Although those types of “contaminants of emerging concern” are not regulated by state or federal authorities, research has begun to link exposure to cancer and other illnesses.

Without federal or state regulations, groundwater polluted with dangerous levels of PFAS is not considered “contaminated,” according to New Jersey DEP spokesman Lawrence Hajna. Over time, groundwater contamination can impact the aquifers that supply drinking water. The DEP proposal would trigger remediation efforts if groundwater contained more than 10 parts per trillion for the chemicals, which include PFOA and PFOS …

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