The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will finally move to label some ‘forever chemicals‘ as hazardous after years of knowing just how dangerous they are to public health, animals, and the environment. While this big move will help clean up two of the dangerous forever chemicals, there will still be many more that need to be addressed.
The Biden administration moved to classify two of the most common chemical compounds of PFAS as hazardous substances. These substances can last for years in the environment and pose a huge risk to all living things. The PFAS are used to make just about every daily product you can think of, including nonstick cookware, fabrics, pizza boxes, food packaging, cosmetics, and even carpet. They are currently allowed in every state except Hawaii and are even found in things like furniture, waterproof clothing, rubbers, plastics, and even dental floss.
These chemicals even leach into drinking water which affects millions of people all around the world. Researchers estimate that more than 200 million Americans in every state could have cancer-causing carcinogens in their drinking water, CBS News reported. These chemicals don’t break down and contaminate soil and drinking water and can be found just about everywhere. Forever chemicals are in the bloodstreams of 99 percent of Americans.
The EPA is proposing the addition of two chemicals, PFOA and PFOS, to the official list of hazardous materials, which will put them under the federal Superfund program, which cleans up toxic waste sites. The new rules will also make it easier to prosecute and make polluters pay to restore the sites that they contaminate.
“There are hundreds of sites across the country where one or both of those have been detected,” said Erik Olson, a senior strategic director at the Natural Resources Defense Council. “What it means in the real world is that once they are listed, the EPA and the states have a lot more muscle to force cleanup.”
The proposed rule will also require companies to report when substances leach into the environment, even if it is in small quantities. This will help public health officials track the chemicals and hopefully get some of these dangerous sites cleaned up.
Sign this petition to stop industrial industries from dumping harmful toxic chemicals into our waterways!
- Petition: Demand These Companies Remove Forever Chemicals From Period Products
- New Technology Could Destroy Forever Chemicals in Drinking Water
- Manufacturers Using New Harmful Forever Chemicals and Causing Soil Contamination in New Jersey
- New York, Colorado, & Michigan Enact New Protections Against Forever Chemicals in Drinking Water
- 5 Nasty Chemicals Found in Food That You Should Ditch Forever
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