Congresswoman Ross Applauds EPA’s First-Ever National Drinking Water Standard to Address PFAS Contamination

President Biden announces additional $1 billion to combat PFAS pollution from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law

April 10, 2024

Today, Congresswoman Deborah Ross (NC-02) released the following statement after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the first-ever national standard to address per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in drinking water, delivering an additional $1 billion from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to combat PFAS contamination. Also known as “forever chemicals,” these harmful toxins do not break down in the environment and are linked to adverse health effects, including deadly cancers, decreased fertility in women, developmental delays in children, and other metabolic disorders. In 2023, the EPA released new data that 20 additional drinking water systems in North Carolina contain PFAS contaminants.

Under this new national standard, public water systems must begin testing their drinking water for PFAS contamination and must install treatment devices or switch their drinking water sources by 2029 if high levels of PFAS are found. This new rule will reduce PFAS exposure for approximately 100 million people and protect public health by preventing thousands of deaths and tens of thousands of serious illnesses.

“Today, President Biden and Administrator Regan have taken a critical step to protect communities in North Carolina and across the country by establishing our country’s first-ever national drinking water standard to combat PFAS contamination,” said Congresswoman Ross. “To safeguard public health and protect our environment, we need a robust, comprehensive approach to rid our water of these harmful chemicals and ensure everyone has access to clean drinking water. Unfortunately, North Carolinians are all too familiar with PFAS contamination. When our people turn on the tap, they should not be concerned that their drinking water could be contaminated with harmful chemicals, potentially causing lifelong health problems.

“In Congress, I worked to pass the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and will keep fighting to protect the health and well-being of our people and our planet. I’m incredibly grateful for the leadership of President Biden on this issue. Thanks to this new standard, we are now one step closer to ensuring every American has access to safe drinking water, free of these dangerous pollutants.”