Tom Ewing’s Environmental Update

*  Exposure to Polyfluoroalkyl Substances – PFAS – is an emerging issue at state and federal levels.  Michigan has had to move quicker than most states or localities because of reports of high PFAS levels or the stuff is actually threatening public water supplies.  PFAS compounds are used in thousands of applications including firefighting foam, food packaging, and many other consumer products, by industries such as tanneries, metal platers, and clothing manufacturers.  Last week, Michigan announced reaching the mid-point in collecting samples statewide of PFAS levels in public water supplies.  Michigan’s Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has collected samples from 892 of the state’s 1,841 public water systems and schools that operate their own wells. Pretty good news, so far, luckily.  To date, of 341 laboratory test results only the City of Parchment’s (just north of Kalamazoo) test results exceeded the EPA Health Advisory of 70 ppt for PFAS in drinking water and the DEQ’s action level of 70 ppt in groundwater; 318 samples were between 0 and 10 ppt, 22 between 10 and 70 ppt.
*  The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is one of the federal agencies taking a close look at PFAS and health risks.  In June, ATSDR published a Draft Toxicological Profile for Perfluoroalkyls.  The Agency is seeking public review and comment as well as additional information, reports, and studies about the health effects of PFAS.   The comment period closed on August 20 and the Agency received 65 sets of comments from a range of reviewers – including state environmental agencies, the American Water Works, trade associations, and individuals.  This work is linked to the formal toxicological profiles prepared for hazardous materials most commonly found at facilities within the National Priorities List, the set of hazardous waste sites that make up the Superfund list, top priorities for EPA’s enforcement and clean up.
*  EPA released its proposed “Affordable Clean Energy (ACE) Rule” last week.  This is the successor to the Clean Power Plan presented by the Supreme Commander to Moses on stone tablets, actually a couple hundred of them.  Because of its sacrosanct Origin, the CPP could not be questioned by the rabbis, priests and holy people writing and instilling the catechism in those ancient times.  Many ages later, though, because of lightning from Zeus, the CPP was cast from the Temple of Righteousness and replaced by the Tweeted One’s ACE.  Is ACE better than CPP?  Worse?  You’d think the Scribes would have questions and maybe even seek answers – What?!.  But no, there are no emojis created yet for “best system of emission reduction (BSER)” or New Source Review and so Darkness Dogma remains, and reigns.  [Hey c’mon, my Peeps, it’s Monday – lighten up! *:D big grin]
Tom Ewing
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