SACRAMENTO, CA (KMJ) – California’s Attorney General is part of a multi state coalition – urging the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to protect communities from what they say are dangerous chemicals.
Attorneys General from 19 states, including California’s Xavier Becerra are urging the EPA to proceed with rulemaking to cover the entire family of PFAS chemicals.
PFAS are dubbed “forever chemicals” as they don’t break down in the environment and can accumulate in human bodies.
They’re widely used in consumer products from nonstick cookware, water- and wrinkle-resistant clothing, to food packaging, even in firefighting foam.
“The EPA must stop dragging its feet and do its job to protect our communities from the risks of PFAS,” said Attorney General Becerra. “These forever chemicals taint millions of products, along with the water we drink and the food we eat – damaging our health and the environment. It’s time for EPA to stop ignoring the danger posed by these harmful chemicals and take immediate and appropriate action before it’s too late.”
Critics like Attorney General Becerra say the EPA is putting the chemical industry’s interests first.
Becerra filed the letter as part of a coalition including the attorneys general of New York, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.
The multi-state coalition wants to see the EPA more closely regulate the amount that is released each year.
In the comment letter, the coalition recommends that EPA:
- •Add the entire class of PFAS to the TRI program as a single category listing. The PFAS class includes thousands of individual chemicals, including the 600 chemicals currently active in U.S. commerce;
•In addition to listing PFAS as a category, list a number of individual PFAS chemicals together with certain salts and other compounds associated with the individual chemicals; and
•Given the high potential for harm from PFAS exposure, adopt a reporting threshold of one pound annually for individual PFAS chemicals and the combined category. This would require facilities to report to the TRI program if they are manufacturing, processing, or using PFAS in quantities of at least one pound.
On June 11, 2019, Attorney General Becerra filed a comment letter opposing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Draft Interim Recommendations for addressing groundwater contaminated with PFAS.
In July 2019, the coalition filed a letter in support of Congress’s efforts to pass legislation addressing the dangers of PFAS.
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