AMWA partners with state drinking water administrators in letter to EPA to address PFAS risk communication
AMWA joined the Association of State Drinking Water Administrators (ASDWA) in a May 14 letter to EPA that provided a series of recommendations on how the agency could address risk communication messaging for states and water systems to use when communicating with customers and the public about per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).
EPA’s PFAS Action Plan includes an action to work “collaboratively to develop a risk communication toolbox that includes multi-media materials and messaging for federal, state, tribal, and local partners to...help ensure clear and consistent messages to the public.” AMWA hopes this letter will continue to promote an open channel of communication between the agency and the water associations throughout this process.
Recommendations for EPA to consider when developing the tools included:
- Explain what is known and unknown for specific PFAS and their associated health risks, including information about what a toxicity assessment is, what health advisory levels and maximum contaminant levels are and how they differ, and the use of (or lack of) health effects studies for decision-making;
- Provide some regulatory context for the public to understand why there may be different requirements and actions by different states and water systems for various PFAS; and
- Explain the relative risk from drinking water compared to all PFAS exposure pathways.