Identification of point source dischargers of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances in the United States

Andrews, D. Q., Hayes, J., Stoiber, T., Brewer, B., Campbell, C., & Naidenko, O. V. (2021). “Identification of point source dischargers of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances in the United States.” AWWA Water Science, e1252. https://doi.org/10.1002/aws2.1252 [open access]

Abstract: Drinking water contamination with per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) poses a health risk for communities across the country. The vast majority of the water systems across the United States lack both the technology and the funds to filter out PFAS. Release of PFAS with industrial wastewater from a variety of facilities is a significant contributor to PFAS contamination of drinking water. Here, we provide a screening-level analysis of the potential for environmental PFAS releases from contaminated sites, active industrial sites, wastewater treatment plants, and waste disposal sites (including active and inactive landfills) nationwide. With specific case studies from the US states of Michigan and California, we examine how testing has identified a large number of diverse PFAS sources. Testing results alongside the list of potential sources can be used to inform state- or local-level investigations as well as aid in the development of effluent guidelines and industrial pretreatment programs.

The identification of point sources and establishing per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) effluent guidelines can help mitigate the PFAS contamination of drinking water.

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