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Sun Feb 3, 2019, 02:02 PM

Trump's EPA Refuses To Limit Nasty Teflon Chemicals in Our Drinking Water

Mother Jones
February 3, 2019

The Trump Administration's Environmental Protection Agency does not plan to set a legal limit for two nasty chemicals that lurk in some U.S. drinking water, POLITICO reported this week.

They're part of a group of chemicals known as PFAS, for per-and polyfluoroalky substances.
These chemicals were once prized by a variety of industries for their ability to make surfaces resist heat, oil, stains, grease, and water.
Until the United States tried to phase them out in 2006, PFAS were used in everything from Teflon non-stick pans to microwave popcorn bags to fast-food-wrappers to water-repellent clothing to furniture.
They were also widely used at military bases in foams to extinguish aircraft fires.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns that some studies show that even at low exposure levels, they have been shown to "affect growth, learning, and behavior of infants and older children"
"lower a woman's chance of getting pregnant," increase cholesterol levels," "affect the immune system," and "increase the risk of cancer."

Unfortunately, PFAS are stubbornly persistent in water and soil, and despite the phase-out, they remain a concern in drinking water supplies.
Last year, a Pentagon report revealed that drinking water in 126 military installations contains potentially harmful levels of PFAS.
In 2017, the chemical giant DuPont and it's spin off-company, Chemours, agreed to a $670 million settlement with residents of West Virginia's mid-Ohio Valley claiming PFAS contamination of their drinking water from a nearby Teflon factory.
(Here's a 2016 New York Times Magazine "deep-dive" into the suit)

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