PFAS Regulations

What You Need To Know

PFAS Regulations

Almost everyone agrees that there should be some regulations regarding the use of PFAS and controlling PFAS contamination, but that's where the consensus ends. There is very little agreement between industry and governments (state and federal) on which PFAS should be regulated and what limits are acceptable.

To ensure compliance with PFAS regulations and guidance in your area, you need to look at how PFAS is controlled by three main entities:

THE ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

 

To understand the EPA's approach to PFAS control, the best references are the 2019 PFAS Action Plan and the 2020 Program Update.

Download the PFAS Action Plan

Download the 2020 Program Update

 

EPA Action Plan thumbnail
 

EPA Supplemental Guidance

Although enforceable limits are not anticipated until 2024, the EPA has issued health advisories and other statements designed to help protect the public health.

Drinking water health advisories for PFOA and PFOS

Interim Recommendations for Addressing Groundwater Contaminated with PFOA and PFOS

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Other EPA Regulations and Programs

There are also a number of programs and laws on the books, which authorize the EPA to take action designed to curb chemical contamination.
Many of these have been expanded to include PFAS.

UCMR

 

The Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR) requires Public Water Systems (PWS) to report data regarding contaminants that are suspected to be present in drinking water and do not have health-based standards set under the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA). PFAS were first included in UCMR 3 and the list of PFAS is expected to be expanded in UCMR 5.
While the production of some PFAS, most notably PFOA and PFOS, has been phased out in the United States, these compounds continued to be manufactured in other countries. The Significant New Use Rule (SNUR) seeks to protect the American public by requiring companies to report the importation of products containing PFAS.
The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA) is a federal Superfund program administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and designed to investigate and clean up sites contaminated with hazardous substances. The EPA's 2019 Action Plan calls for moving forward on the process to designate PFOA and PFOS as hazardous substances under CERCLA.

The Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) authorizes the EPA to set standards for contaminants in public drinking water. In addition to adding PFAS to the UCMR, the EPA restated its commitment to setting enforceable standards for PFOA and PFOS in the PFAS Action Plan Program Update.

TRI

Under the EPA's Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) program, U.S. facilities are required to report detailed information on their management of the toxic chemicals they use or release to the environment. In 2020, 172 PFAS chemicals were added to this list. Download the list.

Concerned about completing reporting requirements accurately or on time?
Pace Analytical® Regulatory Services can help.

 

Learn More

Pending Federal Legislation

Dozens of PFAS-related bills are currently making their way through Congress. The best way to track pending legislation is on Congress.gov. Enter PFAS in the search bar and then use the right hand selects to narrow down your results.

State Regulation of PFAS

At the local level, many states have already enacted legislation to control PFAS contamination. Not only does this legislation cover more PFAS compounds, Maximum Contamination Levels (MCLs) are often much lower than those set by the EPA.

For up-to-date information on state-by-state legislation, download the ITRC's table of PFAS Water and Soil Values.

 

Take The Next Step

 

4 Reasons to Choose Pace®

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Experienced

Pace Analytical® has been an industry leader in persistent organic pollutant testing for over three decades, and we were one of the first commercial laboratories to analyze for PFAS compounds.

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Certified

Pace maintains certifications and accreditations in every state that offers or requires them. We're also certified/accredited by NELAC, ISO, the Department of Defense (DoD), and the Department of Energy (DOE).

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Rapid Response

The Pace Rapid Response Team can quickly respond to any emergency. Our team will coordinate sample container delivery, assist with technical information needed onsite, and ensure samples are delivered as quickly as possible to the appropriate Pace laboratory. In many cases, we can provide PFAS results in as little as 24 hours.

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PFAST ®

Our mobile lab is the only certified mobile lab in the industry capable of analyzing PFAS in the single-digit, parts-per-trillion range. This lab can identify PFAS plumes and source areas and provide fully defensible data, often with same-day results and at a lower cost than expedited services at other labs.