WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Dan Kildee (MI-05) has issued a statement after the Trump Administration released a federal study on per- and polyfluoroalkyl chemicals (PFAS).
The administration, including U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt and U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, had previously blocked publication of the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry’s (ATSDR) study, fearing a “public relations nightmare,” according to those from Kildee’s office.
Kildee has repeatedly called for the release of this federal study.
“After blocking its release for months, I am glad the Trump Administration is finally releasing this study,” he stated.
“The public has a right to have the most up-to-date information on toxic chemicals in their drinking water. This federal study is deeply concerning because it demonstrates that PFAS chemicals are more dangerous to human health than the EPA has previously acknowledged. The Trump Administration must address PFAS contamination with more urgency. We must ensure that families and veterans exposed to these dangerous chemicals receive the health care and clean-up resources they need,” Kildee stressed.
In a separate press release, issued by the nonprofit organization Environmental Working Group (EWG), it is stated that the ATSDR report was released on June 20, and had been suppressed by the EPA, the Department of Defense and the White House.
The report recommends a much lower safe level for PFAS chemicals than the EPA’s health advisory level of 70 parts per trillion.
The report from scientists at the ATSDR, a division of the Department of Health and Human Services, concludes that the “minimal risk level” for exposure to PFOA and PFOS – two notorious PFAS chemicals – should be seven to 10 times lower than the level previously recommended by the EPA, according to EWG.
“This study confirms that the EPA’s guidelines for PFAS levels in drinking water woefully underestimate risks to human health,” said Olga Naidenko, Ph.D., senior science advisor at EWG.
“We urge EPA to collect and publish all water results showing PFAS contamination at any level, so Americans across the country can take immediate steps to protect themselves and their families,” Naidenko continued.
A recent EWG analysis of unreleased data suggests that tap water supplies for an estimated 110 million Americans are contaminated with PFAS chemicals.