Delegate Guzman’s Bill to Study PFAS in Drinking Water Making Way Through Senate
Delegate Elizabeth Guzman’s
to study levels of per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in drinking water has passed the Virginia House of Delegates and is expected to be heard by the Senate Committee on Education and Health tomorrow morning.
PFAS are a class of man-made chemicals found in cookware, pizza boxes, stain repellents, and firefighting foam. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the latter is “a major source of groundwater contamination at airports and military bases where firefighting training occurs.” The EPA has not yet established a maximum contaminant level (MCL), which is a legally enforceable limit on the concentration of a substance in public drinking water.
Studies indicate that PFAS can lead to adverse health effects.
According to the EPA
, “the most consistent findings from human epidemiology studies are increased cholesterol levels among exposed populations, with more limited findings related to infant birth weights, effects on the immune system, cancer (for PFOA), thyroid hormone disruption (for PFOS).”
Eight other states
, including North Carolina, have established legally enforceable limits for PFAS in drinking water.
Delegate Guzman’s bill directs the Commissioner of Health to convene a work group to study levels of PFAS in drinking water and to develop specific recommendations for MCLs.
“We all need water to survive, and we demand that our water be safe to drink,” said Delegate Guzman. “I look forward to the recommendations of this work group, which will help us ensure that public drinking water is not a public health risk.”
Delegate Elizabeth Guzman represents the 31st District of the Virginia House of Delegates, covering Southern Prince William County and Eastern Fauquier County. Guzman was the first Hispanic female immigrant to be elected in the Virginia Assembly, and the first member of AFSCME elected to the chamber. Guzman was elected on a promise to expand Medicaid for all Virginians, which was accomplished in 2018. She has also worked to improve our public schools and road conditions. She will continue to work for improved social services and mental health access.