A primer on perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) – emerging contaminants in drinking water

Poly- and perfluorinated substances (PFAS) are synthetic chemicals used globally since the 1960s in a variety of industrial and commercial products. These compounds were designed to resist heat, oil, stains, grease and water and have vastly improved the quality of modern life.

Many chemicals in this group, the most common being perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), are resistant to degradation and therefore have become ubiquitous in the environment. And PFAS issues are now appearing in the news on a weekly basis. To date, there are hundreds of research studies on PFAS that have been performed on both animals and humans and in 2016, the EPA published a very low drinking water advisory (0.07 μg/L), which has generated significant public concern near manufacturing or waste sources.

This whitepaper presents a general “primer” on PFOA and PFOS: It highlights the needs, based on developing regulatory frameworks and public concern, for additional research on toxicity, the growing need for environmental consulting related to PFAS for both industry and the public and the potential for a burgeoning remediation market.

Download the free whitepaper here.