Federal Agencies Plan to Investigate Links between PFAS Exposure and Viral Illness

By Brett Walton, Circle of Blue

The Great Lakes News Collaborative includes Bridge Michigan; Circle of Blue; Great Lakes Now at Detroit Public Television; and Michigan Radio, Michigan’s NPR News Leader; who work together to bring audiences news and information about the impact of climate change, pollution, and aging infrastructure on the Great Lakes and drinking water.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/04/federal-agencies-plan-to-investigate-links-between-pfas-exposure-and-viral-illness/

Circle of Blue

In its fifth year, the Water @ UW-Madison Spring Symposium continues to highlight the most immediate and relevant water-related topics and opportunities for Wisconsin. This year’s free, online symposium is 9 a.m. – noon (CST) Friday, May 7 and is open to all.

“In the true spirit of the Wisconsin Idea, this annual event is about making connections both within the UW-Madison water community and beyond to tackle some of the state’s most difficult water-related challenges,” said Jennifer Hauxwell, associate director of the Aquatic Sciences Center, home of both the University of Wisconsin Water Resources Institute and the Wisconsin Sea Grant College Program and chair of the Water @ UW-Madison executive committee.

This year the agenda includes Gov. Tony Evers (offering pre-recorded remarks), Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes and Secretary Preston Cole of the Department of Natural Resources Preston to discuss state level water-related issues.

There will be another 23 speakers on four panels: Wisconsin Initiative on Climate Change Impacts Working Groups Update, Spotlight on Arts and Culture, Statewide Coordination on PFAS and Exploring the Intersection Between COVID and Water.  

There are a complex and wide array of chemicals in the perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl group, each requiring study of their fate, transport and effects. Image: Agency for Substance and Disease Registry, Division of Community Health Investigations, Department of Health and Human Services.

“Offering this event virtually has the benefit of sharing this informative line-up of science-based and timely water conversations to a much wider audience, and all are welcome to attend,” Hauxwell said. “State-level action plans on climate change and PFAS, as well as how state agencies and university researchers are tackling questions at the intersections of water and COVID-19 will be on the agenda. As we confront the major water issues of our time, the symposium shares findings and areas for future investigation and builds connections between the UW water community and those across the state addressing water-related challenges and opportunities.”

Live captioning will be provided for this event. If other accommodations are needed, contact Water@UW-Madison.

Water @ UW-Madison is an umbrella organizing amplifying the water expertise of 130 faculty and staff across more than 40 departments and programs. Its scholarship represents topics such as water quality, invasive species and water policy.

Freshwater research has a long and storied tradition at the UW-Madison. Since the late 1800s, Wisconsin researchers have been pioneers in disciplines like groundwater hydrology, water chemistry and limnology (the study of inland waters) on the shores of Madison’s lakes. More than a 100 years later, the campus continues to boast world-renowned freshwater scientists and serves as a hotbed for new ideas and innovative research in the physical and social sciences. Water @ UW-Madison keeps this tradition alive though the spring symposium, and other activities throughout the year.  

The post Free, Online Symposium on Hot Water Topics: PFAS, Climate Change and COVID/Water first appeared on Wisconsin Sea Grant.

Original Article

News Releases – Wisconsin Sea Grant

News Releases – Wisconsin Sea Grant

https://www.seagrant.wisc.edu/news/free-online-symposium-on-hot-water-topics-pfas-climate-change-and-covid-water/

Moira Harrington

In its fifth year, the Water @ UW-Madison Spring Symposium continues to highlight the most immediate and relevant water-related topics and opportunities for Wisconsin. This year’s free, online symposium is 9 a.m. – noon Friday, May 7 and is open to all.

“In the true spirit of the Wisconsin Idea, this annual event is about making connections both within the UW-Madison water community and beyond to tackle some of the state’s most difficult water-related challenges,” said Jennifer Hauxwell, associate director of the Aquatic Sciences Center, home of both the University of Wisconsin Water Resources Institute and the Wisconsin Sea Grant College Program and chair of the Water @ UW-Madison executive committee.

This year, the agenda includes Gov. Tony Evers (offering pre-recorded remarks), Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes and Secretary Preston Cole of the Department of Natural Resources Preston to discuss state level water-related issues.

There will be another 23 speakers on four panels: Wisconsin Initiative on Climate Change Impacts Working Groups Update, Spotlight on Arts and Culture, Statewide Coordination on PFAS and Exploring the Intersection Between COVID and Water.

There are a complex and wide array of chemicals in the perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl group, each requiring study of their fate, transport and effects. Image: Agency for Substance and Disease Registry, Division of Community Health Investigations, Department of Health and Human Services.

“Offering this event virtually has the benefit of sharing this informative line-up of science-based and timely water conversations to a much wider audience, and all are welcome to attend,” Hauxwell said. “State-level action plans on climate change and PFAS, as well as how state agencies and university researchers are tackling questions at the intersections of water and COVID-19 will be on the agenda. As we confront the major water issues of our time, the symposium shares findings and areas for future investigation and builds connections between the UW water community and those across the state addressing water-related challenges and opportunities.”

Live captioning will be provided for this event. If other accommodations are needed, contact Water@UW-Madison.

Water @ UW-Madison is an umbrella organizing amplifying the water expertise of 130 faculty and staff across more than 40 departments and programs. Its scholarship represents topics such as water quality, invasive species and water policy.

Freshwater research has a long and storied tradition at the UW-Madison. Since the late 1800s, Wisconsin researchers have been pioneers in disciplines like groundwater hydrology, water chemistry and limnology (the study of inland waters) on the shores of Madison’s lakes. More than a 100 years later, the campus continues to boast world-renowned freshwater scientists and serves as a hotbed for new ideas and innovative research in the physical and social sciences. Water @ UW-Madison keeps this tradition alive though the spring symposium, and other activities throughout the year.

 

The post Free, Online Symposium on Hot Water Topics: PFAS, Climate Change and COVID/Water first appeared on WRI.

Original Article

News Release – WRI

News Release – WRI

https://www.wri.wisc.edu/news/free-online-symposium-on-hot-water-topics-pfas-climate-change-and-covid-water/

Moira Harrington

PFAS News Roundup: Michigan governor invokes defense bill, high levels in Minnesota landfills, business lobby sues Wisconsin DNR

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/04/michigan-governor-minnesota-landfills-wisconsin-business-dnr/

Natasha Blakely

Pollution concerns lead to bottled water for French Island

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources said Thursday that the state will provide free bottled water to about 4,300 residents of French Island in La Crosse County due to concerns about groundwater pollution from PFAS “forever chemicals” that have been linked to causing cancer and a wide array of other illnesses.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/03/ap-pollution-concerns-bottled-water-french-island/

The Associated Press

Wisconsin Legislature moves to kill limits on PFAS, protect conversion therapy

By Todd Richmond, Associated Press Writer

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Wisconsin Legislature moved Tuesday to kill limits on PFAS pollution and to allow therapists, counselors and social workers to continue to try to change gay and transgender people’s sexual orientation.

The Senate and Assembly both took up a bill blocking a state Department of Safety and Professional Standards rule that would have prohibited so-called conversion therapy.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/03/ap-wisconsin-legislature-moves-to-kill-limits-on-pfas-protect-conversion-therapy/

The Associated Press

In the April installment of Wisconsin Sea Grant’s “Lake Talks,” Sarah Balgooyen will discuss “Forever Chemicals: PFAS in the Green Bay Watershed.”

The Lake Talks are informal, interactive science presentations on Great Lakes issues, especially those involving Lake Michigan. In light of the ongoing pandemic, spring 2021 Lake Talks are being offered via Zoom.

Balgooyen will speak Thursday, April 15, from 7-8 p.m. (Register now for this Zoom webinar.)

Dr. Sarah Balgooyen at work in a laboratory on the UW-Madison campus. (Photo: Bonnie Willison)

PFAS are a category of chemicals frequently found in firefighting foams, Teflon and many other common products. They are a hot topic in water research because they are estimated to contaminate the drinking water of 16.5 million people in the United States alone, and much more needs to be understood about these chemicals.

One site of concern in Wisconsin is the Tyco Fire Products facility in Marinette. These concerns involve not only drinking water from private wells in the area, but also the possibility for contaminants to get into the bay of Green Bay and, ultimately, out into Lake Michigan.

Balgooyen, who completed her Ph.D. at UW-Madison in 2019, has been studying this area as the J. Philip Keillor Water Science Fellow at Wisconsin Sea Grant.

In this informal talk geared toward a general audience, Balgooyen will talk about her research process and what she’s found so far. There will also be time during the hour for audience questions. This Zoom webinar is free and open to all.

For connection information for future talks, visit the Lake Talks page of the Wisconsin Sea Grant website, or follow Wisconsin Sea Grant on Facebook or Twitter. You can register for Sarah Balgooyen’s talk now.

For questions about this series, contact Wisconsin Sea Grant science communicator Jennifer Smith.

The post Informal science talk to address PFAS in the Green Bay watershed first appeared on Wisconsin Sea Grant.

Original Article

News Releases – Wisconsin Sea Grant

News Releases – Wisconsin Sea Grant

https://www.seagrant.wisc.edu/news/informal-science-talk-to-address-pfas-in-the-green-bay-watershed/

Jennifer Smith

PFAS News Roundup: Indiana introduces PFAS bills, Michigan citizens unhappy about 8-month disclosure delay

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/03/pfas-news-roundup-indiana-introduces-pfas-bills-michigan-citizens-unhappy-about-8-month-disclosure-delay/

Natasha Blakely

City of La Crosse sues foam-makers over PFAS pollution

LA CROSSE, Wis. (AP) — The city of La Crosse filed a lawsuit Thursday against a host of chemical manufacturers that produced firefighting foam linked to groundwater contamination around the city’s airport.

Tests have revealed at least 40 wells around the airport on French Island are contaminated with man-made chemicals known as PFAS.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/03/ap-la-crosse-sues-foam-makers-pfas-pollution/

The Associated Press

PFAS News Roundup: Pennsylvania water utility sues 3M, Dupont, Michigan officials waited 8 months to warn residents

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/02/pfas-news-pennsylvania-utillity-michigan-officials-wait/

Natasha Blakely

HotSpots H2O: Minnesota Rolls Out Plan for PFAS Contamination

By Elena Bruess, Circle of Blue

The Great Lakes News Collaborative includes Bridge Michigan; Circle of Blue; Great Lakes Now at Detroit Public Television; and Michigan Radio, Michigan’s NPR News Leader; who work together to bring audiences news and information about the impact of climate change, pollution, and aging infrastructure on the Great Lakes and drinking water.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/02/minnesota-plan-pfas-contamination/

Circle of Blue

PFAS in the House: Are toxic “forever chemicals” a steady drip in this reporter’s home?

After spending several months reporting on the PFAS crisis, an alarming realization hit — taco night might be poisoning me.

I learned that the type of nonstick pans that I used to fry the fish usually contain the toxic chemicals, also called per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances. Research alerted me to their use in some types of parchment paper used to roll tortillas, while the aluminum foil in which I wrapped leftovers raised a red flag with its “nonstick” label.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/02/pfas-home-testing-pets-blood-household/

Tom Perkins

PFAS is in fish and wildlife. Researchers prowl Michigan for clues.

By Kelly House, Bridge Michigan, through the Institute for Nonprofit News network

The Great Lakes News Collaborative includes Bridge Michigan; Circle of Blue; Great Lakes Now at Detroit Public Television; and Michigan Radio, Michigan’s NPR News Leader; who work together to bring audiences news and information about the impact of climate change, pollution, and aging infrastructure on the Great Lakes and drinking water.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/02/pfas-fish-wildlife-researchers-michigan/

Bridge Michigan

PFAS News Roundup: Minnesota sets new PFAS blueprint, Biden EPA dumps PFAS assessment over ‘political interference’

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/02/pfas-minnesota-biden-epa-regulations/

Natasha Blakely

PFAS News Roundup: PFAS found in Indigenous household wells, Wisconsin experimental treatment fails, WDNR fish concerns

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/02/pfas-michigan-indigenous-wisconsin-fish-dnr-legislation/

Natasha Blakely

Tests reveal elevated PFAS levels in Madison lakes

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Tests have revealed elevated levels of man-made chemicals known as PFAS in Madison-area lakes, state environmental officials said Thursday.

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources collected samples last year from lakes Mendota, Monona, Upper Mud, Waubesa and Kegonsa, as well as along sections of the Yahara River between the lakes.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/01/ap-tests-reveal-elevated-pfas-levels-madison-lakes/

The Associated Press

PFAS News Roundup: PFAS in Lake Superior smelt, McDonalds drops PFAS packaging, White House weakened EPA guidelines

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/01/pfas-news-lake-superior-smelt-wisconsin-settlement-mcdonalds-epa/

Natasha Blakely

Tests reveal PFAS contamination in 40 La Crosse-area wells

LA CROSSE, Wis. (AP) — Dozens of La Crosse-area wells are contaminated with forever chemicals known as PFAS, tests revealed.

At least 40 wells that provide private drinking water on French Island are contaminated with PFAS levels above recommended standards, the La Crosse Tribune reported Wednesday.

The findings come after La Crosse tested more than 100 private wells downstream from the La Crosse Regional Airport, which is situated on the northern half of the island along the Black River.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2021/01/ap-tests-pfas-contamination-40-la-crosse-wells/

The Associated Press

PFAS News Roundup: PFAS exposure may affect COVID vaccine, NY bans PFAS in food packaging

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/12/pfas-news-roundup-michigan-new-york-wisconsin/

Natasha Blakely

Wisconsin releases action plan to reduce PFAS chemical use

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin must prevent pollution from forever chemicals known as PFAS while developing ways to reduce the chemicals’ use, according to a 25-point action plan released Wednesday by Gov. Tony Evers’ administration after a year of study.

Nearly 20 state agencies, along with the University of Wisconsin, worked on the report to tackle the growing pollution and public concern around PFAS, which is shorthand for perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/12/ap-wisconsin-action-plan-reduce-pfas-chemical-use/

The Associated Press

Today, the Wisconsin PFAS Action Council (WisPAC) released a final report of statewide initiatives regarding per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) with Gov. Evers to the public. Representing the entire University of Wisconsin System, Christina Remucal, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is one member of the council composed of representatives from 17 state agencies. The council has been working on the PFAS Action Plan for over a year to identify priority actions in response to growing concerns about PFAS and the hazards this class of chemicals pose to human health. The council was put together in 2019 by the governor to ensure Wisconsinites have access to clean, safe drinking water.

Christina Remucal. Image credit: University of Wisconsin-Madison

Remucal brought her research experience with PFAS to the table, including her most recently funded Wisconsin Sea Grant project, where she is investigating the fate of PFAS in Green Bay and Lake Michigan sediments and water for two years.

“We often think of PFAS as a groundwater contaminant, but here we have an interesting scientific opportunity to learn about how these chemicals move in surface waters,” Remucal said. Her research team is looking in and around the city of Marinette, which has a known PFAS contamination site and also the bay of Green Bay. They plan to collect samples out on Lake Michigan next year.

Unlike other traditional environmental contaminants like PCBs, which tend to be found more in sediment, Remucal said PFAS dissolve easily in water and move about more freely. There are thousands of different kinds of PFAS. Their chemical structure determines where they’re more likely to travel in the environment. “The ones that are longer-chain compounds – the ones that are a little bigger – are more likely to be found in the sediment,” Remucal said.

One mystery her team is focusing on is why the amounts of PFAS measured in sediment in the field are different than what’s been observed in the laboratory. “In the lab we always try to mimic the environment, but I think these compounds, because of their chemical properties, don’t behave very well. That’s why it’s important to make those measurements in the field as well,” Remucal said.

Remucal recently met with Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources staff members to share what her team has found so far, which is that PFAS concentrations in sediment vary widely. “The Tyco facility drainage ditch sites have a lot of PFAS in them, which we knew. The amounts that are ending up in the sediment vary a lot. We’re finding more of the longer-chain compounds in the sediment than the shorter-chain compounds – more of the sulfinates and the carboxylates. It really depends on the chemistry,” Remucal said.

The researchers are analyzing the sediments themselves to see if their composition might explain why the PFAS amounts vary.

Remucal finds all the public interest in PFAS and her research refreshing and in keeping with Sea Grant expectations to engage stakeholders in research. “It’s challenging working with these chemicals and communicating about them because the chemistry is so complex, but it’s been rewarding to have people so interested in what we are doing.”

Christina Remucal works with PFAS samples in her lab. Image credit: Bonnie Willison, Wisconsin Sea Grant

The post Investigating the fate of PFAS in Green Bay and Lake Michigan first appeared on Wisconsin Sea Grant.

Original Article

News Releases – Wisconsin Sea Grant

News Releases – Wisconsin Sea Grant

https://www.seagrant.wisc.edu/news/investigating-the-fate-of-pfas-in-green-bay-and-lake-michigan/

Marie Zhuikov

PFAS chemicals are ubiquitous. A Pitt scientist is working to protect you from thousands of types at once.

By Oliver Morrison, PublicSource, through the Institute for Nonprofit News network

A single PFAS chemical featured in the movie “Dark Waters” last year about contamination from a Teflon plant in Parkersburg, W.Va. resulted in a $670 million court settlement. A community study showed the chemical was linked to six diseases: kidney cancer, increased cholesterol, ulcerative colitis, thyroid disease, preeclampsia and testicular cancer.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/12/pfas-chemicals-pittsburgh-scientist/

PublicSource

Michigan politicians ran on water problems. Activists want money for fixes.

By Kelly House, Bridge Michigan, through the Institute for Nonprofit News network

The Great Lakes News Collaborative includes Bridge Michigan; Circle of Blue; Great Lakes Now at Detroit Public Television; and Michigan Radio, Michigan’s NPR News Leader; who work together to bring audiences news and information about the impact of climate change, pollution, and aging infrastructure on the Great Lakes and drinking water.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/11/michigan-politicians-water-problems-activists-fixes/

Bridge Michigan

PFAS News Roundup: Michigan health study, Wisconsin deer and fish, possible impact on COVID-19 vaccine

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/11/pfas-news-roundup-michigan-wisconsin-study-vaccine/

Natasha Blakely

PFAS News Roundup: PFOS in fish, Wisconsin standards in dispute, lacking regulations in Canada

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/11/pfas-news-fish-wisconsin-canada/

Natasha Blakely

Per- and polyflourinated substances (PFAS) can be found just about everywhere these days. Some of the first products that used PFAS were non-stick cookware.  PFAS can now be found in such items as clothes and shoes, carpets, couches, food wrappers, fire fighting foam and so much more. It also is found in our air, soil, and water. There are nearly 5,000 PFAS chemicals, some more widely studied and understood than others. 

For decades corporations that invented and used the chemicals in products hid documents and results showing the dangers of PFAS to humans and its persistence in the environment- it is known as the forever chemical because it does not break down in the environment. PFAS is a highly toxic man-made chemical that binds to blood plasma proteins, circulating through each organ in the body. According to the CDC 99% of Americans already have PFOA in our blood. PFOA and PFOS are two highly toxic chemicals and two of the chemicals more widely studied and understood in the PFAS family. This toxic family of chemicals can cause birth defects, reproductive and immune system problems, liver and thyroid disease, and cancer. 

The Environmental Working Group estimates that nearly 110 million Americans’ drinking water is contaminated with PFAS. Unfortunately there are no federal water quality standards restricting how much PFAS can be in our sources of water and our tap water. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued a 70 ppt lifetime limit health advisory, which is like 70 grains of sand in an Olympic-size pool. This health advisory does not take into the full body burden from being exposed to PFAS through items like food wrappers, scotchguard, other items, and drinking water. 

In 2019, the U.S. EPA rolled out its PFAS Action Plan. One of the action items in the plan included establishing a drinking water maximum contamination level (MCL) or drinking water standard for PFOA and PFOS. This has yet to occur and as a result of the lack of action by the federal government, some states are developing their own water quality standards. Majority of the Great Lakes States have set standards more stringent than the U.S. EPA’s public health advisory of 70 ppt. Minnesota and Michigan go even further in setting standards for multiple PFAS chemicals. Canada has set their own standards as well, but these standards are much higher than even the U.S. EPA’s public health advisory. At the end of the day though, each Great Lakes state has the ability to set their own standards and some have failed to set standards, opting for the U.S. EPA’s public health advisory.

PFAS, however, should be regulated as a single-class which could reduce health risks and contamination, and improve clean-up efforts. The current approach of managing PFAS chemicals one-by-one has failed to control the widespread exposures, has led to insufficient public health protection, and is not cost-effective. Managing and regulating PFAS as a single-class of chemicals will, among other things, prohibit manufacturers from substituting a well-known PFAS chemical with a lesser-known PFAS chemical but equally as hazardous to the environment and humans. 

 

Author: Kristy Meyer, Freshwater Future, Director of Policy

Original Article

Blog – Freshwater Future

Blog – Freshwater Future

https://freshwaterfuture.org/uncategorized/states-lead-the-way-in-regulating-certain-pfas-due-to-lack-of-action-at-the-federal-level/

Alexis Smith

Lingering Chemicals: Legacy pollutants continue to haunt the Great Lakes

Long-lived chemicals that were banned years or even decades ago in the U.S. and Canada are still turning up in the bodies of fish and migrating terns in the Great Lakes, and they continue to affect the health of those threatened birds.

Scientists found all three chemicals they checked for in the brains and livers of more than two dozen common terns, at all life stages – chicks, juveniles and adults.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/11/legacy-pollutants-great-lakes-terns-emerald-shiners/

Brian Owens

PFAS News Roundup: Huron River contamination levels drop, New York PFAS cleanup could be delayed

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/10/pfas-huron-river-michigan-new-york/

Natasha Blakely

Hunters need to avoid contaminated game

This article was republished here with permission from Great Lakes Echo.

By Eric Freedman, Capital News Service

To keep healthy this fall, deer hunters have more to worry about than just COVID-19 and the flu.

On the beware list: a group of chemicals known as PFAS and lead from ammunition.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/10/hunters-contaminated-game-pfas-lead/

Great Lakes Echo

PFAS News Roundup: Landfills, Wisconsin action plan, AGs urge congress to be tough on PFAS

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/10/pfas-news-landfills-wisconsin-action-plan-congress/

Natasha Blakely

Michigan PFAS activist has cancer, says she’s not surprised

BELMONT, Mich. (AP) — A woman who was honored by the federal government for her environmental activism in western Michigan has been diagnosed with cancer.

Sandy Wynn-Stelt told WOOD-TV that her thyroid and lymph nodes were removed last week. She has lived for more than 30 years across from a Kent County site where Wolverine Worldwide dumped PFAS-tainted sludge.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/10/ap-michigan-pfas-activist-cancer/

The Associated Press

Explainer: Who regulates U.S. drinking water, and how?

By Brett Walton, Circle of Blue

The Great Lakes News Collaborative includes Bridge Michigan; Circle of Blue; Great Lakes Now at Detroit Public Television; and Michigan Radio, Michigan’s NPR News Leader; who work together to bring audiences news and information about the impact of climate change, pollution, and aging infrastructure on the Great Lakes and drinking water.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/10/explainer-regulates-drinking-water/

Circle of Blue

Michigan governor releases $500 million water infrastructure plan

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced a $500 million plan Thursday to upgrade drinking water and wastewater infrastructure in Michigan that includes actions such as replacing lead service lines and removing chemical pollutants.

The initiative, dubbed MI Clean Water, calls for creating a pot of money from which local governments could apply for grants or loans to improve their water treatment systems.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/10/ap-whitmer-michigan-500-million-water-infrastructure-plan/

The Associated Press

Citizen Excellence: Sandy Wynn-Stelt receives EPA award for efforts to combat PFAS

Sandy Wynn-Stelt, a resident of Belmont, Michigan, known for her fight against Wolverine World Wide and PFAS, earned the 2020 Citizen Excellence in Community Involvement Award from the U.S. EPA.

Wynn-Stelt is featured in Great Lakes Now’s documentary, “The Forever Chemicals,” which brought audiences the story of her journey as she discovered the extent of the PFAS contamination in her private well and in her community.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/09/citizen-excellence-sandy-wynn-stelt-receives-epa-award-for-efforts-to-combat-pfas/

Natasha Blakely

PFAS News Roundup: PFAS puts pregnancies at risk, Nestle and La Croix among waters with elevated PFAS

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/09/pfas-news-roundup-pfas-puts-pregnancies-at-risk-nestle-and-la-croix-among-waters-with-elevated-pfas/

Natasha Blakely

DNR: Avoid eating deer livers in Marinette area

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — State environmental and health officials warned people Tuesday to avoid eating the livers of deer harvested around the Marinette area to avoid exposure to PFAS chemicals.

PFAS are man-made chemicals that research suggests can cause a range of health problems in humans. The chemicals have been used for decades in a range of products, including nonstick cookware, fast-food wrappers and firefighting foam.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/09/ap-dnr-pfas-deer-livers-wisconsin-marinette/

The Associated Press

Across the U.S., millions of people are drinking unsafe water. How can we fix that?

By Lynne Peeples, Ensia, through the Institute for Nonprofit News network

This story is the first in a nine-month investigation of drinking water contamination across the U.S. The series is supported by funding from the Park Foundation and Water Foundation.

Once a week, Florencia Ramos makes a special trip to the R–N Market in Lindsay, California.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/09/drinking-unsafe-water-contaminants-solutions/

Ensia

Indiana universities receive grants to study PFAS impact on water quality

By Timberly Ferree, Indiana Environmental Reporter

Indiana University and Purdue University have each been awarded $1.6 million Environmental Protection Agency research grants to better understand the potential impacts of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances on water quality and availability in rural communities and agricultural operations across the United States.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/09/indiana-universities-pfas-impact-water-quality/

Indiana Environmental Reporter

PFAS News Roundup: PFAS in fast food packaging, every Madison well

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/08/pfas-news-roundup-pfas-in-fast-food-packaging-every-madison-well/

Samantha Cantie

PFAS Progress: Michigan continues legislative push for more action against PFAS

Michigan is at the forefront of states in the U.S. when it comes to taking action against per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, a group of manmade chemicals found in a wide range of consumer products as well as firefighting foam.

On Monday, Michigan’s new statewide PFAS maximum contaminant levels took effect, and they are currently among the most comprehensive and strict standards in the country in limiting the amount of PFAS in drinking water.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/08/pfas-michigan-legislative-push-action/

Natasha Blakely

PFAS News Roundup: New compound in Artic seawater, Michigan and NY set new rules

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/07/pfas-new-compound-artic-seawater-michigan-rules/

Samantha Cantie

Groups hope NY rules get pollutants out of drinking water

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Clean water activists hope that water suppliers will remove an industrial pollutant under new water standards adopted Thursday in New York.

The state’s Public Health and Health Planning Council adopted standards that set a maximum level for how much of the hard-to-remove chemical 1,4-Dioxane can be in drinking water: 1 part per billion.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/07/ny-activists-rules-pollutants-drinking-water/

The Associated Press

PFAS News Roundup: Research suggests link with COVID-19, disposal methods increase contamination

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/07/pfas-michigan-wisconsin-legislation-foam-covid-19/

Samantha Cantie

July 10, 2020

This week: Legislation to Address Water Access Focus of All About Water Webinars + Governor Whitmer Extends Water Reconnection To Year’s End   + Great Lake Water Temperatures Spike Due to Heat + Michigan Airports Receive $2.5 Million In Grants For PFAS Testing + Wastewater Can Show Early Detection of COVID-19 Outbreaks


Legislation to Address Water Access Focus of All About Water Webinars

Hosted by Freshwater Future, the All About Water Webinars focused on policy solutions to address access to affordable, safe drinking water and how we can work together to ensure that water is turned on, stays on and is affordable. Visit our website to view the slides from presenters and links to recorded sessions.

Water as a Human Right Legislation Gaining Bipartisan Support in D.C.

Representative Rashida Tlaib shared on the All About Water Webinar that Republicans and Democrats are sponsoring legislation to continue moratoriums on water shutoffs while we are still fighting this pandemic.  Water is essential for life and protecting public health. No one person should ever have to worry about whether they are able to put food on the table or have water flowing from their taps.  You can urge your Congressional member today to support and work with colleagues on both sides of the aisle to swiftly pass the Water Affordability, Transparency, Equity and Reliability (WATER) Act and the Emergency Water is a Human Right Act.


Governor Whitmer Extends Water Re-connection Order To Year’s End

The number one preventive measure taken to fight against COVID-19 is washing our hands. Gov. Whitmer extended the water reconnection order until the end of the year to help people do exactly that.  We know there are still people who have not been reconnected, and that there are groups including Freshwater Future working to change that.


Great Lake Water Temperatures Spike Due to Heat

Several days of sunny, hot, calm weather resulted in large portions of the Great Lakes warming significantly in some places over ten degrees in just five days. Astounding visuals and video forecast of how and where the Great Lakes temperatures have increased can be seen here.


Michigan Airports Receive $2.5 Million In Grants For PFAS Testing 

Fire-fighting foams containing the toxic chemical called PFAS have been used for decades to put out jet fuel fires.  Fire department training and use of foams contaminated groundwater and drinking water.  The Michigan PFAS Action Response Team is awarding municipal airports throughout the state grant funding for testing of PFAS contamination. Areas like Pellston, MI have been issued $250,000 of this grant due to known impacts on residential wells.


Wastewater Can Show Early Detection of COVID-19 Outbreaks

Researching human waste has proven to be an effective model for tracing and pinpointing COVID-19 infected populations before the area experiences an uptick in cases. In particular, targeting the asymptomatic group that unknowingly carries the virus and spreads it to more vulnerable populations is what makes this research that much more valuable.

Original Article

Blog – Freshwater Future

Blog – Freshwater Future

https://freshwaterfuture.org/uncategorized/freshwater-weekly-july-13-2020/

Alexis Smith

July 2, 2020

This week: Public Health and Water Affordability Focus of All About Water Webinar + Lake Erie Harmful Algal Blooms Forecast Program + Illinois Announces Two Funding Sources for Improving Water Quality +  Michigan House Passes Bill For Toxic Firefighting Foam To Be Reported And Disposed + Potential for Mirages on Lake Michigan from Weather Conditions


Public Health and Water Affordability Focus of All About Water Webinar 

It is no secret, but access to clean, safe water is essential to prevent public health problems. This week’s first All About Water Webinar featured amazing presentations on contaminated drinking water and connections to public health problems, including research in Detroit on mapping the water crisis that revealed the inequities that illustrate the impact of water shutoffs on public health.

Limited space available in webinar next week:

Policy & Water Affordability Webinar, Wed, July 8, 10 am to Noon ET

Strategy Session & Water Affordability, Thurs, July 9, 2020, 2-4 pm ET

Register here to participate.

Video recordings, presentations, and resources from the first four sessions featuring equity and community roles in water affordability will be available on our website.


Lake Erie Harmful Algal Blooms Forecast Program

An Ohio Sea Grant and Stone Laboratory webinar on July 9 will discuss the forecast for harmful algal blooms in Lake Erie for 2020. Less rainfall that distributes nutrient pollutant into the rivers connected to Lake Erie may lessen the severity of the blooms in 2020 compared to 2019. However there is no accurate prediction of the level of toxicity of harmful blooms until they occur.  Register for the webinar here.


Illinois Announces Two Funding Sources for Improving Water Quality 

The Illinois EPA announced the availability of $9.5 million in grants to improve the quality of water. The Rebuild Illinois Capital Plan provides $5 million in grants to build green infrastructure, such as rain gardens and green roofs, to reduce pollution from stormwater.  An additional $4.5 million of federal funds are available to address water quality issues directly related to polluted runoff or nonpoint source pollution.


Michigan House Passes Bill For Toxic Firefighting Foam To Be Reported And Disposed

Michigan House approved a bill that mandates fire departments and chiefs to report their use of firefighting foam with toxic PFAS within 48 hours of use. The state environmental department is required to accept the foam and dispose of it properly. State funding support is anticipated so fire departments will not incur disposal costs.


Weather Conditions Right for Mirages on Lake Michigan  

Ghostly ships and buildings may be visible this week on Lake Michigan due to the warm temperatures and calm conditions.  The mirages, called superior images appear reversed and floating above the water.

Original Article

Blog – Freshwater Future

Blog – Freshwater Future

https://freshwaterfuture.org/lake-erie-algae/11747/

Alexis Smith

PFAS News Roundup: Potential COVID-19 connection, DOD bill, Michigan lakes and rivers with PFAS foam

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/07/pfas-michigan-foam-pfas-covid-19/

Samantha Cantie

Roller Coaster: Michigan’s long history with environmental contamination

Close your eyes for a moment and imagine you are on a roller coaster ascending the first and highest hill on the ride. You hear the click, click, click as the car slowly climbs to the top and you start getting excited, even nervous, the closer you get to the peak.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/06/michigan-history-environmental-contamination/

John Hartig

PFAS News Roundup: Michigan collects 30k gallons foam, New York burning restrictions, Wisconsin leads 22-state coalition

PFAS, short for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of widespread man-made chemicals that don’t break down in the environment or the human body and have been flagged as a major contaminant in sources of water across the country.

Keep up with PFAS-related developments in the Great Lakes area.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/06/pfas-amazon-lawsuit-epa-michigan-wisconsin/

Samantha Cantie

Emmy Winner: “The Forever Chemicals” takes documentary prize

It’s still a pandemic, so we didn’t get to attend a gala – in fact I was still in filthy workout clothes when I got the news on Saturday night.

But I can’t imagine it was any less thrilling for any of us on the Great Lakes Now team that produced “The Forever Chemicals” when we all learned we won a Michigan Emmy in the Health/Science – Program/Special category for “The Forever Chemicals,” which premiered 15 months ago on Detroit Public TV.

Read Now at Great Lakes Now.

Original Article

Great Lakes Now

Great Lakes Now

https://www.greatlakesnow.org/2020/06/emmy-pfas-forever-chemicals-documentary-prize/

Sandra Svoboda