Read the full article by Kimberly Ong (NRDC)

“The New York State Drinking Water Quality Council is moving to regulate PFOA and PFOS, a positive direction for protecting New Yorkers’ drinking water from these toxic ‘forever chemicals.’ But an additional provision in the proposed regulation will allow water suppliers to delay implementation of treatment that can start now.

PFOA and PFOS are linked with serious health effects including cancer, hormone disruption, liver and kidney damage, developmental and reproductive harm, changes in serum lipid levels, and immune system toxicity. The chemicals are associated with cancer and developmental harm even at low levels of exposure.

Since the 1940s, PFOA and PFOS have been widely used in consumer products and industrial settings, including in nonstick cookware (e.g., Teflon), stain-resistant carpets and fabric (e.g., Scotchgard and Stainmaster), paper and cardboard food packaging (e.g., fast food wrappers), textiles (e.g., Gore-Tex), toothpaste, shampoos, cosmetics, polishes, waxes, and more. 

PFAS are ‘forever chemicals’ because they remain in the environment and bioaccumulate in our bodies. Even low PFOA and PFOS concentrations in drinking water are associated with substantial increases in blood levels. 

The latest draft regulations will allow water systems to request a deferral from complying with the Maximum Contaminant Levels (MCLs) set by New York State for up to 24 months. Delay continues if the water system requests a renewal of the deferral for an additional 12 months after that. This can prevent water systems from installing the proper technology to treat PFOA and PFOS, continuing to leave New Yorkers at risk for serious adverse health effects…”