US reps from Michigan introduce bipartisan bill dealing with PFAS contamination

Posted at 2:36 PM, Sep 17, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-17 15:36:03-04

Four United States representatives from Michigan introduced a bipartisan bill that deals with PFAS contamination on Monday.

The "PFAS Federal Facility Accountability Act of 2018 urges federal agencies to cooperate with different states as PFAS contamination is detected in communities that are near federal sites.

It was introduced by Republican Reps. Tim Walberg (MI-7) and Fred Upton (MI-6), and Democratic Reps. Debbie Dingell (MI-12) and Dan Kildee (MI-5).

The bill would facilitate testing, monitoring, removal and remediation when the chemicals are detected in the water or soil. It would also require federal agencies to come up with a plan of action with affected states.

“We need an all-hands-on deck response to the growing PFAS contamination in Michigan. PFAS is a man-made chemical, and it will require a man-made solution from all of us working together," Dingell said in a release.

"We need a robust response to protect the wellbeing of our citizens, and our bipartisan bill will help increase coordination between federal and state authorities to cleanup and prevent exposure to these contaminants," Walberg added.

A study from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality in July showed five stormwater drainage outfalls around the Macomb County base tested positive in February for perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances, known as PFAS.

The findings show Selfridge is a source for PFAS in the lake, a drinking water source for several communities. The base was among many to use a PFAS-laden foam for training and firefighting.

PFAS are man-made chemicals that have been used in industry and consumer products such as cosmetics, electronics and fast food wrappers since the 1950s.

Base officials say they are working to minimize the amount of PFAS compounds being discharged. That could include placing activated carbon filters at outfalls.

State officials say credible research shows the substances pose health risks.

A spokesperson for the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality Scott Dean says they are actively testing 1,380 waters systems in Michigan for PFAS, as well as 461 schools. 

The entire bill is below.

US reps from MI introduce bill to deal with PFAS by WXYZ-TV Channel 7 Detroit on Scribd