Community advocates in several states have jointly petitioned the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to regulate hundreds of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, as hazardous waste under a law that would empower federal regulators to initiate cleanups.
The petition, filed Wednesday, Jan. 15, seeks new regulation for the chemicals under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), the primary federal law governing the treatment, storage and disposal of hazardous waste.
PFAS are a family of thousands of synthetic chemicals used in nonstick and waterproof products and firefighting foam. Exposure to the chemicals has been linked to health problems like cancer and autoimmune disease. They have been nicknamed “forever chemicals” because the compounds resist breaking down in the environment.
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