The Environmental Law Group currently represents public entities whose water supplies are contaminated with two highly toxic chemicals — perfluorooctanoic acid (“PFOA”) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (“PFOS”). In 2016, EPA introduced a dramatically reduced Health Advisory Values for PFOA and PFOS found in drinking water of 70 parts per trillion (“ppt”). When both PFOA and PFOS are found in drinking water, the combined concentrations should not exceed 70 ppt.
PFOA and PFOS are part of a family of manmade chemical compounds known as “perfluorinated chemicals” (“PFCs”). A PFC is a chain of carbon atoms surrounded by fluorine atoms. PFOA and PFOS are PFCs with eight or more carbon atoms. For this reason, they are sometimes referred to as “C8.”
Manufacturers have used PFCs to make hundreds of everyday products including nonstick cookware, carpets, clothing, furniture upholstery, waterproofing products, food packaging, and in firefighting foams. PFOS manufacturers ceased production of PFOS in 2002; PFOA manufacturers likewise agreed to stop producing PFOA in 2006.
Once released into the environment through the use or disposal of a product, PFCs persist in the environment. Because these compounds are water soluble and do not readily adsorb to sediments or soil, they tend to stay in the water column. Because these chemicals resist breaking down, scientists have found them globally — in water, soil, and air as well as in human food supplies, breast milk, umbilical cord blood, and human
Both PFOA and PFOS are known animal carcinogens and likely human carcinogens. Given their potential health risks, the EPA asked the manufacturers to reduce their use of these chemicals.
How Baron & Budd Can Help
If you are a drinking water provider or public entity whose drinking water supplies are contaminated with PFOA and/or PFOS, you may be able to take legal action in an effort to obtain compensation. Please contact the national law firm of Baron & Budd by calling 866-364-6376 or complete our contact form. We will carefully listen to the details of your case and let you know how we may be able to help.