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Get ready for some great news, eco-warriors! The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed its first-ever national drinking water standard for “forever chemicals.” This groundbreaking move could make a significant difference in the quality of drinking water for millions of Americans.

Source: PBS NewsHour/Youtube

Forever chemicals, or per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), are a family of synthetic chemicals that remain in the environment and human body for an incredibly long time. They’ve been linked to serious health problems such as cancer, obesity, thyroid disease, high cholesterol, decreased fertility, liver damage, and hormone suppression. Scary, right?

The new rule aims to regulate drinking water standards for six specific PFAS chemicals. Under this proposal, water systems will need to monitor these chemicals, inform the public about PFAS levels, and work to reduce them if they exceed the allowed limit. EPA Administrator Michael Regan said the proposed rule would protect people’s health for generations to come, calling PFAS contamination “one of the most pressing environmental and public health concerns in the modern world.” And we couldn’t agree more.

The proposed standards are much stricter than those suggested by the EPA in 2016. They have been updated based on the latest scientific findings, which show that PFAS chemicals are even more hazardous to human health than previously believed.

This rule represents a massive step forward in the fight against PFAS contamination. It’s particularly noteworthy considering that the Safe Drinking Water Act hasn’t seen any new chemical standards since 1996.  The proposal is now open for public comment, and the EPA is expected to issue a final decision on the rule later this year. Once the regulation is in place, public water systems will generally have three years to comply.

Environmental groups have applauded this announcement, with Melanie Benesh of the Environmental Working Group calling it “historic and long overdue.” Sarah Doll from Safer States added that “polluters, those who actually caused the harm, should help pay for the cleanup.”

So, what can we do to Support this essential change? The first step is to stay informed and make our voices heard during the public comment period. You can also reduce your own demand for products that contain PFAS chemicals by choosing eco-friendly alternatives when shopping for water-repellent clothes, furniture, carpet, nonstick pans, paints, cosmetics, cleaning products, and food packaging.

Remember, we all have a part to play in creating a more sustainable world. Let’s do our bit to ensure the safety and well-being of future generations.

As for our call to action, we urge you to share this article with your friends and family to spread the word about the EPA’s bold move against forever chemicals. Together, we can all help make a difference for a cleaner, greener, and healthier planet. Cheers to that!

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