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ACC Comments on New EPA Health Advisories for Four Specific PFAS

ACC has raised a number of concerns about EPA’s assessments for these four substances that have not been addressed in the final assessments.

Tom Flanagin

WASHINGTON (June 15, 2022) — The American Chemistry Council (ACC) today released the following statement in response to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (Agency or EPA) four Health Advisories on specific PFAS: 

“ACC supports the development of drinking water standards for PFAS based on the best available science.  However, today’s announcement of revised Lifetime Health Advisories (LHAs) for PFOA and PFOS and new Advisories for PFBS and the GenX chemicals (HFPO-DA) reflects a failure of the Agency to follow its accepted practice for ensuring the scientific integrity of its process.  

“LHAs assume a lifetime of exposure. While they are non-regulatory levels, they will have sweeping implications for policies at the state and federal levels. Getting the science right is of critical importance.

“The Agency’s revised LHAs for PFOA and PFOS are based on toxicity assessments that are currently being reviewed by EPA’s Science Advisory Board.  Rather than wait for the outcome of this peer review, EPA has announced new Advisories that are 3,000 to 17,000 times lower than those released by the Obama Administration in 2016.  These new levels cannot be achieved with existing treatment technology and, in fact, are below levels that can be reliably detected using existing EPA methods.

“The new LHA For HFPO-DA is based on a 2021 toxicity assessment in which EPA made significant changes to its interpretation of the science that were not subject to external review.  The result is a drinking water value that is well below those developed by the NC Department of Environmental Quality and the MI Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy.

“PFAS are a diverse universe of chemistries with properties critical to a number of important uses, including renewable energy efforts, medical supplies integral to modern healthcare, and products critical to the resiliency of our supply chains.  Importantly, all PFAS chemistries are not the same.  According to EPA, approximately 600 PFAS chemistries are manufactured or in use today. Each chemistry has its own unique properties and uses, as well as unique environmental and health profiles. 
“ACC is concerned that the process for development of these LHAs is fundamentally flawed.  We will continue to engage with EPA and policymakers at the state and federal level to advocate for strong, science-based policies that are protective of human health and the environment.”

American Chemistry Council

The American Chemistry Council’s mission is to advocate for the people, policy, and products of chemistry that make the United States the global leader in innovation and manufacturing. To achieve this, we: Champion science-based policy solutions across all levels of government; Drive continuous performance improvement to protect employees and communities through Responsible Care®; Foster the development of sustainability practices throughout ACC member companies; and Communicate authentically with communities about challenges and solutions for a safer, healthier and more sustainable way of life. Our vision is a world made better by chemistry, where people live happier, healthier, and more prosperous lives, safely and sustainably—for generations to come.

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