Kuster, Pappas Introduce Legislation to Reduce Output of Dangerous PFAS Chemicals
Washington, DC, May 9, 2019
Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02) and Congressman Chris Pappas (NH-01), both members of the Bipartisan PFAS Task Force, have introduced the Protecting Communities from New PFAS Act. This legislation would prevent new PFAS chemicals from being approved through the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) pre-manufacture notice system. Since 2002, there have been more than 100 new PFAS chemicals reported to the EPA, and chemical companies are creating replacement, or short-chained, PFAS chemicals that still show environmental and health toxicity concerns. This bill would close the door on new PFAS chemicals entering the public and commercial markets.
“PFAS chemicals pose a serious threat to people in New Hampshire and across the country,” said Kuster. “We must prevent the proliferation of these PFAS chemicals that find their way into our air and drinking water. Our legislation would put a stop to companies adjusting PFAS chemicals on a molecular level to bypass environmental protections. I will continue to work with my colleagues to protect families and communities across New Hampshire and fight to ensure everyone can access clean, safe drinking water.”
“Short-sighted EPA regulations have allowed chemical companies to utilize unstudied forms of PFAS which put the health and wellbeing of New Hampshire families at risk,” said Congressman Pappas. “I am proud to work with Congresswoman Kuster to introduce legislation that turns off the spigot of PFAS chemicals as we work to fully understand how expansive the impacts of PFAS are on humans and the environment. I will continue fighting to hold polluters and the EPA accountable while ensuring the necessary federal regulations are put in place to keep our communities safe.”
Kuster has been vocal about the need to address PFAS and other water contaminants in New Hampshire. Kuster questioned Susan Bodine, the Assistant Administrator for EPA's Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance (OECA) about the EPA’s PFAS action plan and expressed her concern about the EPA’s response to this crisis. She has joined with the New Hampshire delegation to call for more research into the connection between pediatric cancer and PFAS exposure. Last year’s National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) increased funding for the study of PFAS as requested by Kuster. She has also called on the Trump Administration to immediately release a toxicology report about widespread water contamination from perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS).
Since entering office, Congressman Pappas has also worked diligently to address PFAS contamination. Last month, Congressman Pappas introduced the bipartisan Veterans Exposed to Toxic (VET) PFAS Act, which guarantees health and disability benefits to veterans and their families exposed to PFAS contaminants. Additionally, Congressman Pappas helped introduce the bipartisan PFAS Registry Act to ensure military service members and veterans have the health information, updates, and resources they deserve as new information on PFAS contaminants continues to surface.