Biden Administration Announces First-Ever Limits on Nation

( – President Joe Biden’s administration has imposed strict limits on “forever chemicals” in drinking water, which will require utilities to lower the chemicals to the minimum level at which they can be reliably measured.

Officials seek to reduce exposure to the chemicals for 100 million people and lower the risk of thousands of health conditions — such as cancer — that have been linked to them. The ruling is the first limit on perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, in the country’s history.

The toxic PFAS have a long-term and widespread impact on the environment. Health campaigners have praised the Environmental Protection Agency for maintaining its stance on the strict limits proposed in 2023. Water utilities, however, took issue with the verdict, claiming the treatment systems are costly to install. They warned that the ruling would result in customers having to pay more for water.

Under the Biden administration’s plans, the EPA has also called on cities to replace harmful lead pipes within ten years. The White House aims to cut down on lead in drinking water and prevent public health crises such as those in Flint, Michigan, and Washington, D.C., from happening. The EPA stated that stricter standards would lead to better IQ scores in children and fewer issues with heart disease and high blood pressure in adults.

EPA administrator Michael Regan said the verdict on PFAS was the most important action the agency has ever taken on PFAS. He said the move will improve the vitality and health of many of the country’s communities. The decision means that the EPA will now set maximum contaminant levels. Skeptics are claiming that the dangers of PFAS’ have been known for years and that the EPA’s response has been slow.

PFAS are dangerous because they do not degrade in the environment. They are connected to a number of health issues, including kidney cancer and low birth weight. The chemicals are used in several everyday items, such as nonstick pans, waterproof clothing, and firefighting foam. Some types have already been phased out in the U.S., but others remain in use.

The ruling means that water companies will be required to remove contamination from other industries that enter the water supply. North Carolina State University professor Scott Belcher stressed that the problem is the accumulation of chemicals. He added that even minuscule amounts of the chemicals build up over one’s lifetime and can lead to health problems.

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