Monday, November 19, 2018

Governor's PFAS Action Team Public Meeting Nov. 30 In Harrisburg

On November 19, the Governor's PFAS Action Team announced it will hold a public meeting in Harrisburg on November 30 to help residents learn more about contamination problems from perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).
The meeting will feature presentations from experts from state governments and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency about PFAS contamination and how it is managed, as well as utilities, municipal governments, advocacy organizations, and others.
There will also include time for public comment.  An open comment period for residents to share their concerns with PFAS is also available at DEP’s eComment webpage.
“As we explore PFAS contamination, we have asked everyone to share their knowledge,” said Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Patrick McDonnell. “We need to have as much information as we can on these chemicals and their potential impacts on health and the environment.”
PFAS substances were commonly used in applications that include surface coating of paper and cardboard packaging products, carpets, non-stick pans, and textiles, as well as firefighting foams.
These substances have been detected in air, water, and soil in and around production manufacturing facilities, and airports and military bases that used firefighting foams.
“Gov. Wolf called on the federal government to show leadership by establishing national safe drinking water standards for PFOS and PFOA, but in the absence of federal action, Pennsylvania will move forward aggressively to ensure Pennsylvania residents are protected,” McDonnell continued.
Companies began phasing out the production and use of several PFAS substances in the early 2000s, and two of the most well studied-- perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS)-- are no longer manufactured or imported into the United States. Despite the phase-out, contamination has been identified at 15 sites in Pennsylvania, each of which are being addressed by state and federal cleanup efforts.
Gov. Wolf formed the Action Team in September of 2018 to address PFAS contaminants across the Commonwealth and protect Pennsylvania residents.
Public Comments Accepted
There is an open comment period for residents to share their concerns with PFAS at DEP’s eComment webpage.
The meeting will be held at the Rachel Carson Building starting at 9:00 a.m.  The meeting will also be available online from the DEP PFAS webpage.
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