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Forever chemicals regulations, new challenges for Chesapeake Bay

Toxic ‘forever chemicals’ in drinking water must be destroyed by states around the country. For four perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl chemicals, or PFAS, the Environmental Protection Agency of the US suggested new lifetime health advisories, stating that even very low levels in drinking water contains hazards to the population.

Thousands of extensively used and extremely persistent compounds make up the PFAS category. Infertility, delay in development, reduced immune system and an increased risk of various cancers are just a few of the health issues that some have been proven to cause. Throughout the country, including the watershed of the Chesapeake Bay, they have been found in both private and public water systems.

A limit for the PFAS in drinking water has not been established by the Agency as of yet. But as of 2016, it has advised keeping the concentration of the two most often found substances, PFOA and PFOS. The increased standards for these two forever chemicals are under the limits of detection of the common testing methodologies, according to the spokespersons for health and environment agency in Bay jurisdictions. This presents some significant issues.

All of them stated that they were anticipating new guidance from the EPA. Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia are among the states that have been waiting for the guidelines by the Protection agency for forever chemicals in the drinking water. By the end of 202, the Environment Protection Agency plans to establish national drinking water restrictions for PFASs. However, it is still unclear how many water systems could be impacted because several of them are not required to conduct the necessary tests for the contaminants

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