Last time, we began looking at the topic of PFASs contamination of public water supplies. As we noted, there are various potential ways that PFASs can enter into water supplies other than industrial sites. Not surprisingly, these toxins show up more frequently in some states and locations than others.
According to the Harvard study we mentioned last time, Georgia is among a group of 13 states which account for a large percentage of PFASs detections across the United States. The study, which involved examination of 36,000 water samples across the United States, found that 75 percent of PFAS detections came from California, New Jersey, North Carolina, Alabama, Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York, Georgia, Minnesota, Arizona, Massachusetts and Illinois.
The researchers behind the study speculated that the reason for high levels of PFASs in some states and locations is the relatively high number of point sources for the chemicals, as well as local geological and hydrological conditions which favor transport of the contaminants.
Certain types of PFASs have been phased out of use in the United States, which is an improvement, but because PFASs are such stable compounds, they can hang around the environment for long time. At present, research into PFAS contamination continues to be conducted, both regarding their effects on human populations and how to address contamination.
In a future post, we’ll look at what the EPA does to address PFAS contamination and what recourse is available to those who have been harmed by exposure to these toxic chemicals.