The EPA and other world health organizations have sounded the alarm on the dangers and health impacts of being exposed to per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs & PFOAs) also known as the forever chemicals.
In response, federal and state regulators are adopting new water quality guidelines and laws to address these contaminants in our drinking water systems and groundwater pollution. It's a pervasive issue, as PFASs can be found in various types and over 4,700 different variations, each with at least three polyfluorinated carbon atoms.
With more than 10,000 types of PFASs introduced into products, it's no wonder that the quality of drinking water in the USA and other countries has been compromised. But what exactly are PFASs? These are fluorinated substances that contain at least one fully fluorinated methyl or methylene carbon atom. While they do not contain atoms like hydrogen, chlorine, bromine, or iodine, any chemical with a perfluorinated (CF3) or perfluorinated (CF2) component falls under the PFAS category. However, there are a few exceptions.
PFASs can be further classified into subgroups such as surfactants, perfluorosulfonic acids, perfluorooctane sulfonic acids, perfluorocarboxylic acids, and perfluorooctanoic acids (commonly referred to as PFOSs and PFOAs). These persistent organic pollutants, also known as "forever chemicals," pose a significant challenge due to their resistance to environmental degradation. As a result, they are found in humans, animals, and water supplies across the USA.