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Water Sector News

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WATER ASSOCIATIONS SEND LETTER TO CONGRESS REGARDING CERCLA EXEMPTION FOR PFAS

May 3, 2022
https://www.wwdmag.com/polyflouroalkyl-substances-pfas/water-associations-send-letter-congress-regarding-cercla-exemption

A letter from 10 water associations to Congress regarding The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) notes that a hazardous substance designation under CERCLA could pose severe unintended consequences on water systems. 

The letter encourages Congress to pose a water system exemption if PFAS are designated as CERCLA hazardous substances. CERCLA, also known as Superfund, provides a federal Superfund to: clean up uncontrolled or abandoned hazardous-waste sites; and clean up accidents, spills, and other releases of pollutants and contaminants into the environment. 

According to the U.S. EPA, CERCLA seeks out the parties responsible for any release and the subsequent cooperation in the cleanup. PFAS chemicals come through the raw influent that arrives at the treatment plant, which comes from domestic, commercial, and industrial sources.

This is especially harmful for those who do not produce, use, or profit from PFAS being placed into commerce, according to the joint letter. According to the letter, the designation of PFAS as CERCLA hazardous substances may shift the clean-up and liability costs onto municipalities and the public, which can be costly.

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