Read the full article (Earth Justice)
“WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, Earthjustice filed a petition on behalf of a diverse coalition of community organizations, first responders, and environmental advocates asking the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to close regulatory loopholes in the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) that companies repeatedly exploit to get new PFAS approved. Today’s petition argues that PFAS pose far too much risk to health to allow companies making or using new PFAS to circumvent the individual safety review process TSCA mandates.
‘The nation is awash in PFAS. Yet EPA continues to approve new PFAS even though it knows the risks such chemicals may pose to human health and the environment,’ says Suzanne Novak, Earthjustice staff attorney. ‘Even worse, EPA allows companies to circumvent the regular safety review process for new PFAS in violation of TSCA and in ways that have already impacted entire communities. That must stop.’
Proper enforcement of TSCA is critical for regulating new potentially toxic chemicals and protecting public health. While TSCA permits exemptions from the rigor of a full review in some cases, such exemptions may be used only for chemicals that ‘will not present an unreasonable risk’ of harm. More often than not, companies bring new PFAS to market through these exemptions, resulting in either no safety review of the chemical or a curtailed one, all while the public is kept in the dark. But PFAS are dangerous even at very low levels of exposures and do not fall in the ‘will not present unreasonable risk’ category. Despite knowing the wide-ranging serious health risks posed by well-studied PFAS, and that new PFAS may have similar effects, EPA continues to approve new PFAS via exemptions to the standard review process. All PFAS should be robustly reviewed…”