"I think that people should be concerned about the amount of PFOA and PFOS that is in our environment," Susan M. Pinney, a professor in the Department of Environmental Health at the University of Cincinnati, wrote in an email. This family of man-made chemicals is used in all kinds of products and industrial applications to make surfaces resistant to water, lipids and stains. Neighbors and family members, even their own children, diagnosed with serious medical conditions, from thyroid disease to cancer. This article originally appeared on BayJournal.com on November 17, 2020, and is republished with permission. People can also be exposed to them through food packaging and industrial exposure. Some PFAS can last 8 years in our bodies, leading to an accumulation over time. "You can’t tell us that we drank contaminated water for 50 years and that it did nothing, that it didn’t have a health impact," Stanton, 54, said. Stanton says neither her community, nor the rest of the country, can afford to wait. For kids in Horsham and Warminster townships, that was just one of the perks of growing up near two active military bases. Water trickles through boards meant to stop runoff from the Willow Grove Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base into a local creek in Horsham Township, Pa. Lori Cervera sits at home with her dogs in Horsham Township, Pa. Cervera was diagnosed with kidney cancer, shortly before tests revealed PFAS contamination in her well. Among them were provisions requiring water utilities to reduce the amount of PFAS in tap water under the Safe Drinking Water Act, along with the designation of PFAS as a toxic substance under the Superfund law. Stanton’s son was diagnosed with a brain tumor at six years old. Commission officials took issue with the PEER findings, saying the lab that tested the water samples used a method that has not been approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Exposure to PFAS increases the risk of cancer, harms the development of the fetus and reduces the effectiveness of vaccines. Earlier this year, North Carolina State University researchers reported finding elevated levels of PFAS in 58 striped bass caught in the Cape Fear River near Wilmington. That would have required cleanup, including by the Department of Defense, of the most contaminated sites. A growing body of science has found that there are potential adverse health impacts associated with PFAS exposure, including liver damage, thyroid disease, decreased fertility, high cholesterol, obesity, hormone suppression and cancer. In order to be more accurate and inclusive of the whole class of chemicals, “PFAS” is now used by the scientific community and decision-makers. SoMDC appreciates all feedback from the community, along with tips, pictures, articles contributed, and support. Toxic ‘forever chemicals’ more common in tap water than thought, report says Testing done by an environmental watchdog shows a class of chemicals called PFAS are running through dozens of … medical monitoring of affected residents. More testing has found so-called “forever chemicals” in a striped bass, blue crab and oyster from the Chesapeake Bay, as well as in drinking water from household taps in Maryland’s Montgomery County. Often referred to as "forever chemicals," because they do not degrade in the environment, PFAS have been linked to various medical conditions and cancers in humans and animals, including kidney and testicular cancer, thyroid disease, and effects on the immune system, among others. Join our email list to stay in the loop on clean water issues affecting your region. They are also a key ingredient in firefighting foam, used by the DOD since at least the 1970s. One well topped off at 2,740 ppt (parts per trillion) — 39 times the limit of 70 ppt recommended by the EPA. But the women share other kinds of memories. ", "We’ve heard about the action plan of the EPA," Stanton said. It rated the public health risk from swimming in the water and consuming oysters as “very low,” based on its findings. Exposures to PFAS have been associated with birth defects, damage to the liver and kidneys, and an elevated cancer risk. Grumbles said that report shouldn’t be read as saying there’s no cause for concern about PFAS. Sharon Lerner at The Intercept has a series of stories titled “The Teflon Toxin” (17 parts currently) that cover the issue extensively and in incredible depth. Brendan Boyle grew up in Warminster, Pa., where testing revealed high levels of PFAS in the drinking water supply. There are several ways you can reduce your exposure to PFAS. Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a group of man-made chemicals that includes PFOA, PFOS, GenX, and many other chemicals. More testing has found so-called “forever chemicals” in a striped bass, blue crab and oyster from the Chesapeake Bay, as well as in drinking water from household taps in Maryland’s Montgomery County. "’Where did you grow up? "You hear a lot of words, but you've never heard anybody apologize.". As required by federal law, the Department of Defense has, and continues to, conduct cleanup actions at sites where PFAS was found, Chuck Prichard, spokesperson for the DOD, said. Impatient with the pace of federal action, 10 states where the chemicals have been found in drinking water have acted to set safety standards of their own that are stricter or cover more PFAS than the EPA guidelines. They also spread easily through water and can build up in animals or organisms that ingest them, including people. The department hopes to complete sampling the first 12 locations by year’s end, Shaffer said. It is their job to hold polluters accountable, even if the polluter is the Department of Defense.". Where was your early pregnancy?’", "The guilt is overwhelming, just that the possibility exists that my exposure may have caused my child's cancer," she added. Records uncovered during litigation show that chemical companies that manufactured PFAS, including 3M and DuPont, were also aware early on of the danger. They've been manufactured since the 1940s and can be found in Teflon nonstick products, stains and water repellants, paints, cleaning products, food packaging and firefighting foams. "’Where do you live,’" Stanton said. PFAS stands for per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances. SoMDC covers every aspect of the SoMD Region and will continue to grow with the community. PFAS is a family of chemicals defined by the presence of one or several carbon-flourine bonds, the strongest chemical bond in nature. There are also the tragedies that hit their own families. But communities nationwide, many near military bases, have discovered levels of PFAS in their water hundreds, sometimes thousands, of times higher than the advisory level recommended by the agency. The MDE earlier this year tested water and oysters in Southern Maryland after independent testing found PFAS in St. Inigoes Creek in St. Mary’s County. Households with infants or young children can reduce exposure by dusting more frequently and washing hands thoroughly before meals. A 'forever chemical' contaminates drinking water near military bases. The EPA is moving to implement various aspects of its action plan, including setting a maximum contaminant level (MCL) for PFAS, which would require utilities to test for the chemicals and remediate contaminated water. "My kids played in the pool," Cervera said. Tests of the soil revealed PFAS levels at 98,000 parts per billion. I want clean water for my grandchildren.". But PFAS in drinking water and food are not regulated at the federal level, and it’s not clear what the long-term health risks are of the levels detected in the PEER report. Grosse, who lived across the street from the Naval Air Warfare Center in Warminster, remembers watching, with rapt attention, as Navy personnel torched airplanes during weekly fire drills and doused the flames with a white, bubbly foam. "We would run up the street as the sirens went off and sit with our fingers in the fence," Grosse, 55, said. Credit: Will Parson / Chesapeake Bay Program, Family internet centers keep students connected to learning; Martin center opens Dec. 1, It’s Academic To Air Dec. 2, 7 p.m. On CCPS Youtube, Tv Stations, Public Works to Host Free Tire Recycling Event for Residents and Farmers, Virtual Job Rotations Enrich Jobs, Enhance Skills, COVID App May Help Contact-Tracing Challenges This Holiday, Final Defendant and Drug Supplier in Anne Arundel and Calvert County Drug Conspiracy Pleads Guilty, SoMD Weather for Wednesday, November 25, 2020, Maryland Department of Health expands “Keep On, Maryland” campaign, featuring new messages from Governor Larry Hogan, Annmarie Garden In Lights To Open This Friday, Chisholm: Hogan’s Latest ‘Draconian Measures’ Allow Businesses To ‘Weaponize Against Other Businesses’, Proudly powered by Newspack by Automattic. This includes both large integrated filtration systems and smaller, less costly point-of-use filters. The Poolesville home is on a well. For Grosse and Stanton, it was like a lightbulb went on. "It was, ‘Let's see what happens.’". “A seafood platter containing oysters, crab and rockfish with these levels of toxins is a danger to public health, especially women who may be pregnant or breastfeeding,” contended Pat Elder, the activist who also assisted PEER in its testing.

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