PFAS POLICY

South Carolina, Maryland Urge 4th Circuit To Back PFAS Remand Decisions

South Carolina and Maryland are urging a federal appeals court to affirm two lower court decisions remanding PFAS contamination cases against 3M Co. to state court, arguing that the PFAS manufacturer failed to satisfy requirements for removal to federal court under the federal officer removal statute. The company “has demonstrated none of the three elements required to support federal officer removal jurisdiction: that it acted under a federal officer, that it has a colorable federal defense, and that the charged...

Industry Points To Cost, Other Concerns In CERCLA PFAS Rule Challenge

Industry groups are outlining the issues they are likely to raise in their challenge to EPA’s landmark Superfund rule designating two PFAS as “hazardous substances,” including whether the agency must weigh costs in the rule, whether its cost analysis was sufficient and whether it erred in interpreting the law in the first-ever listing of such substances. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is leading the legal challenge against the agency’s Superfund per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) rule. It filed a non-binding...

Water Utilities, Industry Outline Broad Suit Over PFAS Drinking Water Rule

Water utilities and manufacturers are outlining a broad range of legal issues they plan to argue in their challenge to EPA’s landmark Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) rule setting limits on six PFAS, questioning science and cost decisions while emphasizing claims on the agency’s regulation of four of the chemicals they say break with the law’s process requirements. The water utility groups American Water Works Association (AWWA) and Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies (AMWA), industry groups National Association of Manufacturers...

EPA Proposes To Revoke Pesticide Tolerance Exemption For Teflon

EPA is proposing to revoke an allowance for the use of polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) -- a type of PFAS known by its brand name Teflon -- as an inert ingredient in pesticides, noting the compound is no longer used in any registered pesticide and continuing the agency’s practice of removing PFAS from acceptable inert ingredients. The agency says in a Federal Register notice scheduled to be published July 16 that it is proposing to revoke the tolerance exemption for the...

House GOP Probes Second CERCLA PFAS Rule As EPA Shelves Measure

Top leaders of the House Energy & Commerce (E&C) Committee are questioning EPA Administrator Michael Regan’s plans for regulating any additional PFAS under the Superfund law just days after the agency announced it was delaying indefinitely such a rulemaking. Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) and environment subcommittee Chair Earl “Buddy” Carter (R-GA) sent Regan a July 12 letter demanding he provide transparency on the agency’s efforts to classify any additional per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) -- beyond the two...

North Carolina Panel Delays PFAS Water Standards Over Cost Concerns

A North Carolina regulatory panel is continuing to delay action on surface water and groundwater limits for eight PFAS, questioning the standards’ costs and whether the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has accurately evaluated the health impacts of the chemicals. During July 10 meetings of key subpanels of the state’s Environmental Management Commission (EMC), panel members questioned DEQ staff about the fiscal and regulatory impact analyses (RIAs) the department has developed to support the groundwater and surface water quality standards,...

New Mexico Seeks To Add CERCLA Claims To Military PFAS Cleanup Case

New Mexico is moving to add Superfund cost recovery claims to its suit against the military for PFAS contamination, noting EPA’s designation of two PFAS as “hazardous substances” is now in effect and arguing in part that the state has incurred significant costs responding to the contamination due to the military’s inaction. The move is the first such action in multidistrict litigation (MDL) over per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) contamination stemming from firefighting foam since EPA’s Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation,...

EPA Advises States Monitor For 12 PFAS In Fish, Weigh Consumption Limits

In a first-time measure, EPA is advising states, tribes and territories to monitor for 12 PFAS in fish and shellfish found in waterbodies in their jurisdictions and issue consumption advisories when necessary, issuing guidance a year later than expected to aid states and tribes in setting such advisories for the chemicals that may pose human health risks. EPA says the recommendations will help protect communities from exposure to per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). “It’s important for EPA to continue advancing...

Senate Defense Panel Eyes PFAS Definition Change, Citing F-Gas Uses

The Senate Armed Services Committee is opening the door to reevaluating the definition of PFAS, asking the Defense Department (DOD) to weigh in on how the currently broad definition in defense law might impact the military’s need for fluorinated gas (F-gas)-based fire suppression products. The request, in a newly released committee report accompanying the panel’s fiscal year 2025 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) bill, signals a potential move that could be concerning for environmentalists, who have long touted the broad...

Study Warns Of PFAS Releases As Lithium-Ion Battery Demands Grow

Researchers who conducted a multi-pronged study on a little-examined subclass of PFAS used in the production of lithium-ion batteries are warning that increased demand for the batteries in the clean energy sector could result in widespread releases of these PFAS and are suggesting adopting “rigorous lifecycle assessments” to avoid regrettable substitutions in the effort to cut greenhouse gases. “Our results reveal a dilemma associated with manufacturing, disposal, and recycling of clean energy infrastructure,” Jennifer Guelfo, an associate professor of environmental...

Environmentalists Seek To Intervene In Industry’s CERCLA PFAS Rule Suit

Environmentalists are seeking to intervene in industry’s legal challenge of EPA’s landmark Superfund rule designating two PFAS as “hazardous substances,” potentially fortifying the agency’s defense of its first-ever attempt at listing substances under section 102 of the Superfund law. The environmental and grassroots groups say they meet requirements for intervening in the litigation , Chamber of Commerce of the USA, et al. v. EPA, et al. , and have fought for cleanup of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in their...

Judge Approves BASF’s $316.5 Million PFAS Deal With Water Utilities

A federal judge has preliminarily approved a $316.5 million settlement between drinking water providers and BASF Corp., the fourth such settlement to come out of multidistrict litigation (MDL) over PFAS contamination from firefighting foam and the latest in a series of such deals the judge has backed. Judge Richard Gergel of the U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina gave the preliminary approval in a July 3 order that also sets a Nov. 1 date for the final...

DOD Poised To Ask Congress To Extend Deadline For Ending AFFF Use

The Defense Department (DOD) is preparing to ask Congress by Aug. 2 for a one-year extension of the Oct. 1 deadline to end its use of PFAS-containing firefighting foam, citing capability limitations of fluorine-free foam (F3), steep funding requirements and a difficulty maintaining safety standards. “Although the Department has made significant progress, it needs additional time to ensure a methodical and safe transition of approximately 1,500 facilities and over 6,000 mobile assets,” DOD says in June briefing slides posted to...

EPA PFAS Rule Drives Fears Over Lack Of Limits For Farm Water, Products

New Mexico’s agriculture secretary and environmentalists are raising concerns about the lack of federal measures to address PFAS in farm products and water used in agricultural production, criticizing the Food & Drug Administration’s (FDA) food sampling protocol and its lack of agricultural water limits for PFAS in the wake of EPA’s new drinking water standards. Jeff Witte, secretary of the New Mexico Agriculture Department, told Inside PFAS Policy in a June 27 email response that PFAS in the agricultural...

3M Urges Court To Deny Michigan, Illinois PFAS Cases’ Remand Motions

PFAS manufacturer 3M is urging the court overseeing PFAS multidistrict litigation (MDL) to deny motions from Michigan and Illinois seeking to remand to state courts their litigation involving contamination from sources other than firefighting foam, arguing the states have failed to identify any reason for remand. Recent supplemental briefs from the states “present no new facts or law that would justify a departure” from a decision from the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan in Nessel v....

Minnesota Proposes Stringent PFAS Discharge Limits For 3M Facility

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) is proposing stringent limits on PFAS in wastewater and stormwater discharges from 3M’s Cottage Grove facility that would require the PFAS manufacturer to remove certain PFAS to below detectable levels -- one of the first states to propose such limits. The draft permit is one of the most rigorous in state history, adding new water quality protections for the Mississippi River, improving accountability through monitoring and reporting requirements and mandating the removal of certain...

EPA Delays Plans To Expand PFAS CERCLA Hazardous Substances List

EPA is delaying for an unknown period of time its plan to regulate an additional seven PFAS under the Superfund law following concerns from a variety of stakeholders and as the agency’s designation of the two most studied PFAS as Superfund “hazardous substances” is facing a legal challenge from industry groups. According to the long-term actions section of the spring 2024 Unified Agenda of regulatory actions, released July 5, EPA says the timeline for designating additional per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances...

Superfund PFAS Rule Takes Effect, Triggering Immediate Release Reporting

EPA’s first-time rule designating the two most studied PFAS as “hazardous substances” under the Superfund law takes effect July 8, giving EPA the authority to order cleanups and recover costs from liable parties for remediation of the two PFAS and immediately triggering reporting requirements for parties that release one pound or more of the substances within a 24-hour period. The rule’s reporting requirements are not expected to have a significant impact per se , but over the long-term, industry expects...

Landfill Study Highlights Need for Better PFAS Air Emissions Controls

A recently published study suggests that vented solid waste landfill gas is a major pathway for PFAS emissions from landfills, comparable to landfill leachate, prompting the study authors to suggest landfills should be targeted in PFAS mitigation and management strategies to reduce inhalation risk and release to the environment. The study , published June 26 in the American Chemical Society’s Environmental Science & Technology Letters , examined three solid waste landfills in Florida to assess per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances’ (PFAS)...

Industry Urges GSA To Drop Proposal To Limit PFAS In Procurement

Aerospace, semiconductor, information technology and coatings industry groups are urging the General Services Administration (GSA) to drop plans to expand bans on the federal procurement of products containing PFAS -- or exclude their sectors -- pointing to supply chain and product performance challenges. For example, the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) notes in June 17 comments that it has previously found the use of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) ubiquitous in the aerospace and defense (A&D) industry. “While AIA members are...

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