There’s a water contamination crisis in upstate New York.
In towns like Hoosick Falls, NY, toxic chemical compounds called PFAS have been detected in drinking water at unsafe levels. PFAS exposure can lead to autoimmune disorders and cancer, according to the Center for Disease Control.
EPA’s Pete Lopez addressed the issue at Hoosick Falls Community Working Group meeting in January. Rep. Antonio Delgado, who has made regulating PFAS a top priority in Congress, attended.
After the meeting, Delgado wrote to Lopez pressing EPA to set Maximum Contaminant Levels for PFAS in drinking water.
EPA has known about the dangers of PFAS since 2001. “Already too much time has passed without meaningful action from the EPA,” Delgado wrote. The congressman also highlighted the need to designate the most harmful PFAS chemicals as hazardous substances.
In Congress, Delgado successfully passed a bill to require manufacturers to report PFAS chemical usage to the EPA’s Toxics Release Inventory.
But his work on drinking water safety is not finished. “I cannot stress how vital it is that the EPA is accountable to communities who have been and continue to be affected by PFAS contamination,” he said.