PFAS

MAPPING PFAS

PFAS Waste Generation and Disposal

Beefalo hybrid of cattle and bison

January 2022 – Through a Freedom of Information Act request, PEER received data from EPA on PFAS transfers identified in hazardous waste e-manifests and state waste code searches. This data and the map PEER produced has information on the generation, storage, and disposal of almost 14 million kilograms of waste contaminated with PFAS between July 2018 and August 2021.

MAPPING PFAS

Over 120,000 Facilities “May Be Handling” PFAS

Beefalo hybrid of cattle and bison

October 2021 – After several Freedom of Information Act requests and a lawsuit, PEER received an EPA data set with information on some 120,000 industrial facilities that “may be handling” PFAS – with that information, we produced our own map of these facilities.

Forever Chemicals Everywhere

PEER works to protect public health and wildlife from per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) contamination. Unfortunately, the absence of enforceable federal health and environmental standards for PFAS poses a significant and growing threat to our health, water, and soil. A key cause for concern is that these so-called “forever chemicals” do not break down in the environment, many of which are toxic, and some bio-accumulate in the food chain — and in us.

PFAS are used as fire retardants and repellents; in consumer products, such as furniture, take-out containers, and non-stick cookware; and have many other applications. Human exposure to PFAS is associated with cancer, birth defects, developmental damage to infants, and impaired functioning of the liver, kidneys, and immune system.

Yet, an estimated 200 million Americans are drinking water contaminated with PFAS, and PFAS have also been found in grocery store meats, milk, seafood, bottled water, as well as in wild fish and game. Studies have also found PFAS in the bloodstream of 99% of Americans.

Although the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) knows of about 12,039 types of PFAS, it has failed to set a legal limit for PFAS in drinking water, clean up existing PFAS pollution, reduce ongoing releases of PFAS, and ban PFAS from everyday products. The only action taken has been to issue a non-enforceable health advisory, even though there are more than 2,854 known contaminated sites. This number will surely grow as more communities begin testing.

PEER is urging EPA to regulate PFAS as a class of chemicals and to classify waste contaminated with PFAS as a hazardous waste under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), so that it can be more safely managed during generation, transportation, and disposal. In addition, PEER continues to expose how EPA violates its own scientific integrity norms and guidance in approving PFAS chemicals for use. We also work vigorously to release to the public information on PFAS that EPA tries to keep hidden from the public.

Petitioning the EPA

The absence of federal standards for tracking and managing waste contaminated with toxic per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) poses a significant and growing threat to our health, water, and soil. That is why, over two years ago, PEER petitioned EPAto issue a rule listing waste containing PFAS as a hazardous waste under Subpart C of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). EPA has not yet responded to our petition. (Click  image to read petition)

story map

Toxic Chemicals in Your Backyard

Environmental Protection Agency Data: Does it Point to Colorado as the PFAS Capital of the U.S.?

Explore the Map»

PFAS News and Resources

Beefalo hybrid of cattle and bison

NEWS FROM PEER

Off-the-Charts PFAS in Maryland Biosolid Fertilizers

Call for Montgomery County Ban on Biosolids to Stem Water Contamination

PFAS in Plastic Containers Should Not Be Confidential

Groups Urge EPA to Inform the Public of the Presence of Unsafe PFAS in Fluorinated Containers

PEERMail | We Are Suing to Prevent Further PFAS Contamination

Handling or using fluorinated containers could be a significant pathway for unsafe human exposure to PFOA and other PFAS.

Tens of Millions of Plastic Containers Treated with Fluorine Gas Leach Toxic PFAS Chemicals into Art and Cleaning Supplies, Food, and Other Household Products

Nonprofit Organizations File Suit Against Inhance Technologies to Stop Violations of U.S. EPA Regulations

COMMENTARY | The Hidden Dangers of Biosolids

Biosolids are often marketed as "all-natural" but we don’t think about the pollutants that are transferred to ...

Substantial PFAS Contamination Found in Pesticides in Colorado

Threat to Food Chain Justifies Colorado Ban of All Pesticides Containing PFAS

Los Angeles’ Artificial Turf Plan Misguided

PFAS Found in Turf Dangerous for Children

Substantial PFAS Contamination Found in Pesticides

Threat to Food Chain Justifies Ban of All Pesticides Containing PFAS

Food Supply Chain Imperiled by PFAS-Laden Barrels

EPA Confirms PFAS in Fluorinated Containers Leach into Contents

COMMENTARY | The Worst Kind of Backroom Deal

It is time to work to stop the Manchin-Schumer side deal to the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA).

EPA’s Belated PFAS Pesticide Ingredient Ban Does Little

Banning a Dozen Inert Ingredients Does Not Stem PFAS Agricultural Spread

REPORT | Toxic PFAS Chemicals Measured in Nashville Fertilizer – 08-09-2022 (PDF) 

DESCRIPTION: PEER and Sierra Club Tennessee measured concentrations of PFAS or “forever chemicals,” in three bags ...

Testing Reveals High Levels of PFAS in Tennessee Fertilizer

Music City Gold is a home fertilizer made with Nashville sewage waste

COMMENTARY | PFAS Contamination Study Yields Frightening Results

Environmental contamination of PFAS has exceeded a new planetary boundary or environmental limits within which ...

EPA Flunks PFAS Chemistry Test

New Advisories Ignore Precursors That Transform into Most Toxic Fluorinated Chemicals

EPA Takes First Baby Steps on PFAS

Nonregulatory Health Advisories on Just Four of Thousands of PFAS

Gaping Hole in Biden PFAS Strategy

Documents Show EPA Has No Consistent Definition of PFAS

COMMENTARY | New Mexico Dairy Farmers’ Toxic Fight

A new Mexico Dairy farmer who lost his entire herd to PFAS contamination is yet another tragic example of the ...

COMMENTARY | Colorado PFAS Prevention Act Passes

On May 11, 2022, the Colorado Legislature tackled the PFAS contamination crisis by passing one of the most ...

COMMENTARY | Fighting Government Secrecy

Government agencies are coming up short in their stewardship of environmental information, and that is having real ...
Phone: 202-265-7337

962 Wayne Avenue, Suite 610
Silver Spring, MD 20910-4453

Copyright 2001–2023 Public Employees for
Environmental Responsibility

PEER is a 501(c)(3) organization
EIN: 93-1102740