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Bill to create standards for PFAS passes U.S. House

Published: Jul. 21, 2021 at 4:27 PM EDT
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WASHINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - A bill that establishes requirements and incentives to limit the use of perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances, commonly referred to as PFAS, and remediates PFAS in the environment, has passed the House.

H.R. 2467, referred to as the PFAS Action Act, is a bipartisan bill that was co-sponsored by Rep. David Rouzer (NC-7).

The bill passed the house in a 241-183 vote; the bill will now move to the Senate.

Rouzer was one of 23 Republicans who voted in favor of the bill and he issued the following statement:

“Protecting our local communities and keeping our drinking water safe from PFAS chemicals such as GenX is a top priority. Now that this bill has passed the House, hopefully both chambers of Congress will be able to agree on legislation that will provide our communities and utility authorities the resources they need to better address these and other unregulated contaminants.”

PFAS also known as “forever chemicals,” found in the air and in drinking water, are not regulated, are toxic to the environment and are linked to human health conditions, including some cancers and weakened immune systems.

The bill directs the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to designate select PFAS as hazardous substances and devise protocols to stop or reverse environmental damage. It also directs the EPA to determine whether PFAS should be designated as toxic pollutants under the Clean Water Act and establish standards to limit discharge from industrial sources into waterways.

After adding PFOA and PFOS to the list of hazardous air pollutants, the bill also requires the EPA to test all PFAS for toxicity to human health and regulate disposal of all materials containing PFAS.

Incentives to address PFAS are included in the bill, such as grants to help treat contaminated water.

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