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Posted on: November 15, 2018

CFPUA Responds to Recently Released EPA Toxicity Assessment

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The Environmental Protection Agency is the nation’s top regulatory authority for drinking water. As such, CFPUA is pleased to see they have started to assess the risks that GenX and other PFAS may pose to human health.

This assessment is part of the PFAS Management Plan that EPA announced this past summer.  The values announced this week are in draft form and open for public comment before a final value is established.

Assessing the risks associated with man-made chemicals like GenX takes time. It also requires the work of experts in many different fields, from toxicologists to environmental scientists. As these experts continue their work in assessing the impacts of various PFAS chemicals on human health and the environment, we expect that more reports like this one will be released. 

Unfortunately, this risk assessment process did not occur before these compounds were released to the environment. While time is needed to fully assess these compounds, our community continues to be exposed through their presence in our source water. We do not yet fully understand if the levels of PFAS in drinking water have the potential affect public health.

Because we do not fully understand their impact, and because we know a proper risk assessment will take time, CFPUA wants to take all precautions at our drinking water plant. We are currently in the process of implementing a temporary solution to reduce PFAS levels, while we design a permanent GAC facility for the Sweeney Plant. We expect the interim solution to begin reducing levels of PFAS by the end of this month. 

We will continue to monitor levels of these compounds in our source water and work with our partners at NCDEQ and NCDHHS to understand their impacts on public health and regulatory compliance. We encourage EPA to continue their work and to assess the health impacts of all PFAS found in the Cape Fear River.

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