PFAS are referred to as “forever chemicals” because they do not degrade. Legally, they do not have to be labelled, even though they create a huge number of devastating health and environmental consequences. They are only recently becoming a political issue, yet our guests have been working on this issue for at least 8 years. The EPA has been both a help and a hindrance. We’ll hear about solutions and examples of victories we've already gotten.
Our guests this week:
Brenda Hampton, Angel in Alabama and founder of Concerned Citizens of WMEL, which successfully got a reverse-osmosis water filtration system and payments to customers of 8 water utilities that are downstream of 27 industrial sites. She has led efforts to have PFAS removed from fast-food packaging, having success with McDonald’s, Wendy’s, and Burger King. [Update: unfortunately, Brenda was unable to join us, but please check out her documentary.]
Kyla Bennett, director of New England PEER (Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility) and director of science policy for PEER, previously worked for the EPA for 10 years. PEER-arranged testing first showed PFAS in containers made by Inhance Technologies. Evidence from PEER and the company led to an EPA conclusion that their process poses unreasonable risks to public health and that Inhance must end its use of the fluoridation process.
Joel Kupferman, a New York environmental lawyer whose organization, the NY Environmental Law & Justice Project, caused a $1 million fine against Clarke Company and caused NYC to withdraw an $8 million contract for a second round of pesticide spraying. In addition, we really appreciate his leadership in producing this show.
Our guests will talk about a recent court decision in favor of 3M and DuPont, EPA decisions both positive and negative, and some of the many products in which PFAS may be found, such as:
cosmetics (e.g., waterproof mascara)
plastic containers for almost anything—and they leach into the contents
Other topics we’ll mention are an attempt to bypass New York state’s ban on fracking and a bill to strengthen the Clean Water Act.
As always, we have music for you, appropriate to the season: Jethro Tull with “Ring Out, Solstice Bells”.
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