"Critics Say EPA Action Plan On Toxic ‘Forever Chemicals’ Falls Short"

"The Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday announced what officials called a historic effort to rein in a class of long-lasting chemicals that pose serious health risks to millions of Americans. But environmental groups and residents of contaminated communities said that the agency’s “action plan” is short on action, saying ample evidence exists to regulate the chemicals in the nation’s drinking water.

The EPA promised in the spring to devise a plan to address the widespread contamination caused by perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl compounds, or PFAS, which have been detected in numerous communities and military bases. The agency’s leader at the time, Scott Pruitt, called the problem “a national emergency.”

The manmade chemicals have long been used in consumer products, including water-repellent fabrics, nonstick cookware and grease-resistant paper products, as well as in firefighting foams. Long-term exposures have been associated with health problems that include thyroid disease, weakened immunity, infertility risks and certain cancers. Because PFAS do not break down in the environment, they have become known as “forever chemicals.”"

Brady Dennis reports for the Washington Post February 14, 2019.


"E.P.A. Will Study Limits on Cancer-Linked Chemicals. Critics Say the Plan Delays Action." (New York Times)

"EPA Too Slow On Limiting Toxic Chemicals, Critics Say" (AP)

"EPA Blasted For Failing To Set Drinking Water Limits For ‘Forever Chemicals’" (Science)

"Dems Slam EPA Plan For Fighting Drinking Water Contaminants" (The Hill)

"U.S. Unveils Plan To Control Some Toxins In Drinking Water, Sets No Limits" (Reuters)

"EPA Plans To Create New Standards For Toxic Chemicals In Water" (Detroit News)

"EPA Plan Leaves Out Chemours Chemical Polluting North Carolina" (Bloomberg Environment)

"EPA Says It Plans To Limit Toxic PFAS Chemicals, But Not Soon Enough For Critics" (NPR)

"The Latest: Environmentalists Criticize Water Pollution Plan" (AP)

"Chemicals Contaminating Us Water Supplies Focus of EPA Plan" (AP)

Source: Washington Post, 02/15/2019