PFASs, or “forever chemicals,” have been polluting our environment for decades—we’ve even written about them here—but they’re making news now because after decades of ignoring the problem, the federal government is finally talking about addressing these forever chemicals head-on.
In case you haven’t heard of them, these specific chemicals are called “forever chemicals” because they can take hundreds, if not thousands, of years to break down. They’re in everyday items, such as your cookware, your dental floss, but more importantly, your drinking water. And they are not benign.
PFASs have been linked to serious health conditions, including high cholesterol, damage to children’s immune systems, liver tumors, and testicular cancer. In spite of all this, there has been no governmental oversight regulating PFASs allowed in the water supply.
With the federal government taking a hands-off approach, some states have tried to establish their own regulations, but it hasn’t been enough. More than 200 million people—most Americans—are still drinking water contaminated by PFASs. The problem is so widespread that the CDC reports finding forever chemicals in the blood of almost everyone it tested.
Even with potential changes coming from Washington, those changes will take time. Which is why it’s important that you educate and advocate for yourself. If you’re not sure how, you can start here:
- Find reliable sources of information that you can trust. Two of our favorites are the Environmental Working Group, or EWG, and Scientific American. You can also come back here for unbiased, factual updates.
- Know what’s in your local tap water. Enter your zip code in the Is My Water Safe database to get a free tap water safety report.
- Call or write your representatives in Washington. Make it clear you support regulating levels of PFASs in drinking water. You can find your Representatives and Senators, and how to reach them here.
- Invest in a high-quality water filtration system. A carbon-filtered pitcher is not enough for this. Look for one that can filter to NSF standards and remove up to 97.5% of all PFASs from your drinking water, like AquaTru.
Since this issue isn’t going away any time soon, it’s more important than ever that you educate, inform, and protect yourself and your loved ones.