(WTNH) — The Connecticut Interagency PFAS Task Force released a draft of its PFAS Action Plan.
The task force, which was established in July by Governor Ned Lamont, is made up of representatives of nearly 21 state agencies and entities and is charged with addressing ways to protect Connecticut’s residents and the environment from the harmful effects of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).
PFAS are man-made chemicals that have been used since the 1940s in products to resist heat, stains, grease, and water.
Commissioner Katie S. Dykes of the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) and Commissioner Renée Coleman-Mitchell of the Department of Public Health (DPH), co-chairs of the task force, are asking for the public’s feedback.
“The science is becoming increasingly clear about the risk associated with these forever chemicals to people and our environment,” said Dykes. “And this is affecting communities across our nation including here in Connecticut. This Task Force is recommending a number of ways to minimize exposure to residents, limit future releases into our environment and clean up historical releases of these contaminants. We welcome the public’s review and feedback on the proposed actions and look forward to working with stakeholders to implement steps to address this issue.”
Key actions of the plan include:
To minimize Connecticut residents’ PFAS exposure
- Test drinking water for PFAS, including bottled water.
- Assess food-related PFAS exposure pathways, including fish and shellfish, agricultural products, and food service ware.
- Minimize occupational exposure to PFAS.
To minimize future releases of PFAS to the environment
- Reduce or prevent future releases of PFAS-containing firefighting foam, known as aqueous film-forming foam (AFFF), to the environment. AFFF is used to extinguish high-hazard, flammable liquid fires.
- Identify and address other significant sources of PFAS contamination.
To identify, assess, and clean up historical releases of PFAS to environment
- Identify areas of concern throughout the state.
- Require testing of environmental media at sites where PFAS are likely to have been released.
- Evaluate corrective measures and establish PFAS cleanup standards.
Cross-Cutting Actions to address real or perceived risks from PFAS
- Enhance education, outreach, and communication on PFAS.
More information can be found on the state’s website.
Comments on the plan will be accepted through Oct. 15, 2019. They can be submitted via email (CTPFAS@ct.gov) or mail.
Mailed comments should b sent to Ray Frigon at 79 Elm Street, Hartford, CT 06106.
After the period for public comment closes, the task force will revise the plan and sent it to Lamont on Nov. 1, 2019.