PFAS

Water faucet photo
Public domain image / Wikimedia.org

Michigan on Tuesday sued 3M, DuPont and other companies for financial damages from contamination caused by potentially harmful “forever” chemicals that are turning up in drinking water across the industrial state. The lawsuitfiled in state court alleges that 17 defendants deliberately concealed the dangers of a class of substances known collectively as PFAS. The filing, announced by state Attorney General Dana Nessel and Gov. Grethen Whitmer, came a year-and-a-half after former Gov. Rick Snyder first stated Michigan’s intent to sue Minnesota-based 3M and other unnamed parties.

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As environmental officials hope to soon set an enforceable limit on the level of PFAS allowed in drinking water, the state of Michigan is seeking the public’s input on the matter. According to a release, “The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy, Drinking Water and Environmental Health Division will hold this week the first of three hearings to receive public comments on proposed rules to establish maximum contaminant levels for seven per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, known as PFAS in drinking water.”

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A $1 Million dollar grant has been awarded for West Michigan to study the long term health affects of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, commonly referred to as PFAS. U.S. Senator Gary Peters of Michigan Tuesday announced the  grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry to conduct how PFAS is affecting West Michigan resident’s health.

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 Annis Water Resources Institute's Dr Alan Steinman joins TMS to talk about holding juvenile sturgeon at AWRI, plus a PFAS in Michigan panel.

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A statewide test for PFAS in Michigan drinking water supplies has concluded, and researchers say, the results are encouraging.

For the past year, the Michigan PFAS Action Response Team conducted a statewide sampling of community, school, child care provider and tribal water supplies for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, commonly referred to as PFAS. The $1.7 million study was the first of its kind in the nation, and researchers say, they were pleasantly surprised at the results.

Wolverine World Wide Rockford tannery photo
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Federal officials say excavators will soon be used to remove contaminated soil and buried leather from the former Wolverine World Wide tannery site in western Michigan.

A stretch of the White Pine Trail, popular with walkers, runners and cyclists, will be closed in Rockford for excavations. Similar work is planned in Belmont to remove soil and waste. Contractors also plan to remove contaminated sediments at two spots in the Rogue River.

Wolverine World Wide is paying for the cleanup work that's being completed this fall.

FDA finds PFAS in foods

Jun 11, 2019
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While potentially toxic chemicals have been discovered in dozens of drinking water supplies across the state of Michigan, a recent report by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration found that a number of grocery store bought foods might also be contaminated.

According to the FDA’s findings, Polyfluoroalkyl substances, commonly called “PFAS,” were found in various packaged foods….some even registering over 250 times higher than what has been “deemed safe” to eat by the Environmental Protection Agency.

Water faucet photo
Public domain image / Wikimedia.org

The results of a state study into the discovery of PFAS in an Ottawa County school’s drinking water supply have been released.

In October, well water tests revealed elevated levels of PFAS in the drinking water at Robinson Elementary School in Grand Haven. Exceeding the EPA Advisory Level of 70 parts per trillion, the water was shut off and bottled water was supplied to students and staff.

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Perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl compounds, or PFAS, are used in manufacturing, firefighting and thousands of household and consumer products. They’re linked to a variety of health problems, including cancer.

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The state says people should avoid contact with toxic foam from chemicals that may be found floating on some lakes, rivers and streams. Michigan Health and Human Services officials say anyone who touches foam from perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances -- PFAS -- should wash it off. The concern is inadvertently transferring the chemicals into a person's mouth while eating.

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