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Forever chemicals are now on the radar of federal and state regulators. They are a class of compounds known as PFAS, short forper- and poly-fluorinated substances or per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substancesthat don’t break down easily.

PFAS can exist in the environment, including in landfills and resulting effluent. The Conversation spoke with the director of Honolulu Environmental Services, Roger Babcock, about a new study to begin testing for forever chemicals in Oʻahu’s solid waste and wastewater.

It’s part of a statewide study led by the Hawaiʻi Department of Health with funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.