Freshwater Future Weekly News: June 9, 2023
Canada Proposes Regulations on PFAS Fire Fighting Foam But Leaves Out Consumer Products
Canadian health and environmental agencies listed over 4700 PFAS chemicals as toxic under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA). Now that the chemicals are listed as toxic, the federal government can propose regulations. PFAS are a family of synthetic compounds called “forever chemicals” because they are extremely persistent in the environment and can accumulate in human blood. They are also linked to health conditions such as cancer. The Canadian government is currently considering restricting some PFAS, such as fire-fighting foam, but unfortunately, not for consumer products. You can help by sending a message to Canada’s government officials and demand a comprehensive ban on PFAS chemicals!
Another Settlement with PFAS Chemical Companies
Last week, three chemical companies that produced and distributed PFAS settled a lawsuit for polluting U.S. drinking water systems for 1.18 billion USD. This agreement settles a case scheduled for trial this week involving a claim by Stuart, Florida – one of many communities, water providers, airports, states, and private well owners dealing with contamination from PFAS. As PFAS is being found in drinking water systems across the nation, the U.S. EPA is proposing to more strictly regulate two common types of PFAS. Water providers would be responsible for monitoring and compliance with these new rules. The cost of PFAS contamination for U.S. water systems is much greater than this settlement – stay tuned for more news and actions on PFAS from Freshwater Future.
New York’s Lead Pipe Right to Know Act Lands on the Governor’s Desk
Freshwater Future and partners helped push adoption of the Lead Pipe Right to Know Act through the New York legislature. Now, it is in the Governor’s hands. New York has one of the highest estimated totals of lead pipe water service lines in the nation. This bill requires the Department of Health to make service line inventories publicly accessible and to create interactive maps so residents can know their risk of lead exposure. Freshwater Future urges Governor Hochul to swiftly sign the act into law! Check out our resources to learn how to reduce your exposure to lead from drinking water.
Canadian Wildfires Cause Dangerous Air Quality Across the Great Lakes Region
Wildfires are burning across Canada, with the Québec province having the highest concentration of fires. While many have yet to be contained by firefighters, smoke is pouring into the Great Lakes region. Particulate matter pollution from wildfires can be incredibly dangerous to human health when breathed in – even over a short period! Freshwater Future is urging our community to stay inside, wear protective masks outside, and continue to check the air quality in your area!
Protecting Waters from Source to Tap Highlighted on Freshwater Future’s Walloon Lake Kayak Tour!
Jill Ryan, Freshwater Future Executive Director, led an educational kayak tour on beautiful Walloon Lake in northern Michigan this week! Freshwater Future was joined by folks from Walloon Lake Association and Conversancy and Petoskey Audubon. It was a great day with old and new friends and we hope to see you out there next year!
Save the Date for Our Next All About Water Convening, In-Person – October 4th in Benton Harbor, Michigan!
The All About Water group is putting together an exciting agenda with national experts on water affordability. Stay tuned for more details.