WASHINGTON – Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva (AZ-03) today called for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to implement more robust and rapid regulation of all PFAS chemicals in water sources across the country. The EPA recently released its strategy for addressing PFAS chemicals and to finish a rule to regulate the toxic chemicals in drinking water by 2023.
“The Biden administration’s plan to regulate PFAS chemicals is a step in the right direction, but the target timeline of 2023 is too late for many communities whose drinking water has been impacted by these dangerous chemicals,” said Rep. Grijalva. “The EPA must move more quickly to establish a rule to protect our drinking water and public health from all PFAS contaminants and the Sente must take up the PFAS Action Act to provide permanent protection and immediate remediation for the thousands of contaminated sites found throughout our nation.”
In July, the House of Representatives passed the PFAS Action Act to address the prevalence of PFAS chemicals in water sources across the country, ensure proper cleanup of contaminated sites, and limit the introduction of new PFAS sources into new commercial products. The bill would require the EPA to set a PFAS drinking water standard to protect public health, require new testing and reporting regimens, and require cleanup of impacted areas.
Rep. Grijalva has worked for years to address the PFAS issue and ensure impacted communities receive the funds they need for adequate cleanup. He voted in 2020 for the PFAS Action Act to regulate PFAS chemicals and cosponsored an amendment to the legislation that would reimburse impacted communities like Tucson for past cleanup efforts while supporting the installation of treatment technologies and infrastructure needed to clean the water. Additionally, he submitted testimony to the House Armed Services Committee to include PFAS remediation funding in the National Defense Authorization Act for FY2021.
There are several PFAS contamination locations in Tucson due to pollutants near Davis Monthan Air Force Base and surrounding areas resulting in Tucson Water spending millions in taxpayer dollars to decontaminate the water and ensure its safety for residents.
“It’s time for the federal government, EPA, the Department of Defense and chemical companies to recognize the role they have played in contaminating the public’s drinking water, land and air and take responsibility for their actions that have impacted many communities like Tucson which has spent millions to decontaminate water and ensure safety for its residents.”