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Health

Environmental Health Advocates Say The State's Recommendations For PFAS Regulations Are Too Weak

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Adam Lister
/
PBS Newshour

Some environmental health advocates say the final recommendations released this week from a state task force examining a family of chemicals known as PFAS are too weak.

Phelps Turner of the Conservation Law Foundation says one area of concern is the recommendation that Maine adopt federal guidelines for allowable levels of PFAS in drinking water. And he says the task force did not recommend mandatory testing for all public water systems.

"We feel that testing should be extended to all public water systems, so that we can identify where the contamination exists, and which people may have been impacted."

He says Maine should follow the lead of other New England states, which have adopted stricter limits.

"It'll allow us to identify where current PFAS contamination exists, not just in the environment and our water supplies, but in people," he says.

Turner says several bills before the legislature offer an opportunity to strengthen Maine's response to PFAS. PFAS are found in many consumer products, and have been linked to health issues such as cancer and infertility.

Originally published 5:10 p.m. Jan. 24, 2020