Following three years of investigations into the uses of and risks posed to human health and the environment by polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs), the national authorities of Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden have concluded that these risks are not adequately controlled. They have therefore submitted a proposal to ECHA to restrict them under REACH.
The American Chemistry Council (ACC) has filed a petition in DC Circuit Court challenging the EPA’s Lifetime Health Advisories (LHAs) for perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA, above) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS). These are both part of the much-maligned wider group of perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).
The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) has brought forward a proposal to ban all per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) in fire-fighting foams in the EU. A six-month consultation period with stakeholders will begin on 23 March.
This follows an investigation the agency carried out at the request of the European Commission into the strengths and weaknesses of five different options. It concluded that the risks posed by PFASs are currently not adequately controlled and that releases should be minimised.
Europe's main trade association for chemicals gave a mixed greeting to the European Commissions's new sustainability strategy
The European Commission (EC) has published a new Chemical Strategy for Sustainability and invited the European Parliament and the Council to endorse this and to contribute to its implementation. It envisages revising REACH “in the most targeted way possible”, while also taking other initiatives to improve legislation.
Swedish-based NGO ChemSec has revealed that over 50 companies have joined the corporate PFAS Movement that it launched a little over a year ago. Three US companies, Naturepedic, Seventh Generation and Beautycounter, are among those who are now part of it, alongside the mainly European membership.
DuPont and the companies that used to be part of it, Chemours and Corteva, have reached a settlement with the Delaware Department of Justice. Under this, they are held responsible for decades of damage done to Delaware’s environment by per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs).
The agreement has avoided a potential lawsuit for historic contamination by PFASs in Delaware, which remains DuPont’s headquarters. This had impacted waterways and groundwater located in each of the state’s three counties.
DuPont, its spin-off company Chemours, and Corteva, which unites DuPont’s and Dow’s former agrochemicals businesses, have agreed a settlement on all legal disputes concerning per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) arising out of the spin-off of Chemours in 2015.