Read the full article by Paula Gardner
“Michigan residents will get a chance to tell federal officials in person what they expect from the U.S. government as it determines public protections from PFAS chemicals.
U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell pressed the Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday to restore plans to hold an engagement meeting in the state. That move came as she and other members of the U.S. House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee held a subcommittee hearing on the chemicals and federal steps that could better protect Americans from their effects…
Michigan continues to identify sources of PFAS contamination, with a focus on drinking water. Officials are testing all of the municipal water supplies and wells, and in August initiated an emergency shut down the water system in Parchment, near Kalamazoo. High levels of the chemicals have been found at sites all over the state, including northern Kent County, Oscoda, the Huron River in southeast Michigan and Battle Creek.
PFAS represents a group of water-repellent chemicals known as per- and poly-flourinated compounds, which have links to cancer, liver damage, birth defects and autoimmune diseases…
The EPA said in May that it would travel to select sites in the U.S. as the agency reviewed its role in setting national enforceable standards for the chemicals. Sessions featuring expert presentations and public feedback were held in five states starting in June.
Michigan was announced as one of the first two stops on the outreach effort.
But by late August, the final location was announced, and Michigan wasn’t on the list…
‘North Carolina wanted to see you, but so did Michigan. People wanted you from one side of the state to the other,’ Dingell said to Gravatt on Thursday, ‘and you didn’t come.
‘Why did you cancel Michigan? And could we get you to still come?’
The answer suggested that the state turned down the EPA. A state spokesman for the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality previously told MLive.com that the state wanted to ensure a ‘productive and manageable format.’
‘If in fact Michigan now wants us to do an event in the state, we’ll be glad to talk talk with you or talk with them,’ Gravatt told Dingell, D-Dearborn, who then pulled in U.S. Reps. Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, and Tim Walberg, R-Tipton, into the request.
‘We take that you’ve accepted it,’ Dingell said.
Unclear so far is where or when the meetings will take place.
Grevatt said that the EPA will follow up with the representatives on setting it up.”