House approves bill requiring regulators to identify chemical products as health hazards

Katie Ramirez
January 12, 2020

The Trump administration threatened to veto H.R. 535, the PFAS Action Act, reported an Environmental Working Group (EWG) news release.

"This is completely unacceptable and why I was proud to support the PFAS Action Act, which will curb the flow of these hazardous chemicals into our environment and protect the health of my constituents, regardless of their zip code".

"I represent so many tireless advocates and concerned constituents in New Hampshire who have identified this threat in their communities and raised our collective consciousness about the dangers of PFAS", said Congressman Chris Pappas. "This legislation is just one step in the effort to clean up our contaminated lands, but by listing PFAS as a hazardous substance the federal government will be able to coordinate response, assist with remediation, and hold responsible parties liable for clean-up costs". The Trump Administration, under its own PFAS Action Plan, promised to establish a drinking-water standard by the end of past year as well as explore designating PFAS chemicals under the Superfund program.

Numerous provisions in the new legislation were originally included in the National Defense Authorization Act, because a lot of PFAS contamination is centered around military sites, Brown says.

Polyfluoroalkyl Substances are a class of man-made chemicals that have been linked with adverse health effects including cancer, immune system effects, infertility, and impaired child development. It has taken neither of these steps. "There is a path ahead; we have broad, bipartisan, commonsense solutions-that relies on sound science-to address the country's PFAS challenges", the statement read.

The legislation includes an amendment introduced by Reps.

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Numerous sites where contamination is in the groundwater or in drinking water lower than the EPA's recommended health limit have faced challenges getting help to clean up the chemicals because now there are no federal guidance or requirements on when it has to be cleaned up and who will pay for it. Why is that? Because the EPA has failed to list these chemicals under the Superfund law.

Two dozen Republicans, along with 222 Democrats, approved the law, which PFAS identified as a unsafe chemical under the Superfund Act.

"This legislation is a major action aimed at safeguarding public health and protecting Americans' access to clean and safe drinking water". I want to thank Rep. Dingell for her leadership on this issue - and her partner, Rep. Upton, as well as Chairman [Frank] Pallone and Subcommittee Chair [Paul] Tonko of the Energy and Commerce Committee.

"This legislation may be the first comprehensive PFAS bill brought to the House Floor, but it will unlikely doubt it will be the last".

But the bill may not go much further, as Senate leaders and the White House have said they don't support it.

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