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July 4, 2022: EPA Orders 4 Chemical Manufacturers to Test PFAS Impact on Breathing

For over 80 years, a group of synthetic chemicals, polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), has been widely used to make products more resistant to water, fire, grease, and stains. PFAS were also used to make the foam used by firefighters to extinguish flames in the 1970’s.
Authorities later discovered the foam firefighters were using to extinguish fires, allowed the chemicals to seep into the ground and waterways, potentially exposing anyone downstream from an area where the foam was used. Further investigations discovered elevated levels of PFAS in the blood of firefighters. Researchers linked the elevated PFAS levels to certain types of cancers – including kidney and testicular cancer.
In the fall of 2021, EPA announced its plan to address PFAS contamination. Part of the plan includes the agency’s National PFAS Testing Strategy. Currently there is insufficient data available to determine the effects associated with inhalation exposure of the chemicals. The testing strategy presented by the agency comprehensively investigates human health endpoints, applying testing methodologies appropriate for the physical-chemical properties of PFAS.
Last week, EPA ordered four chemical manufacturers to determine the inhalation exposure impact PFAS chemical has on humans. Chemours Co., DuPont de Nemours Inc., National Foam Inc. and Johnson Controls Inc. will determine the impact on humans of inhalation exposure to firefighting foam products made with a PFAS chemical, 6:2 fluorotelomer sulfonamide betaine.
EPA Administrator, Michael Regan, said in a statement “For far too long, families across America, especially those in underserved communities, have suffered from PFAS. High-quality, robust data on PFAS helps EPA to better understand and ultimately reduce the potential risks caused by these chemicals. Our communities deserve transparency from the companies that use or produce these substances about their potential environmental and human health impacts.”

EPA Orders PFAS Manufacturers to Test Impact on Breathing

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