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Washington, D.C. - Today AMWA CEO Tom Dobbins released the following statement on EPA’s National Primary Drinking Water Regulation for several PFAS:

The Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies (AMWA) recognizes the importance of regulating PFOA and PFOS to address public health concerns related to these substances in drinking water.  We appreciate EPA's action to finalize the National Primary Drinking Water Regulation while utilizing a five-year implementation timeline that AMWA had recommended to give water systems more time to install necessary treatment systems. However, AMWA has many concerns about the timing of EPA’s finalization of the health index and additional drinking water standards for the three additional PFAS since data is still being collected from utilities under the fifth Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule.

AMWA’s analysis indicates that the drinking water standards for PFOA and PFOS will cost community water system ratepayers hundreds, and in some cases thousands, of additional dollars per year. This will exacerbate the severe water affordability challenges already faced by communities from coast to coast.  This rulemaking represents a multi-billion-dollar unfunded mandate that will be borne by water system ratepayers across the country. While we appreciate that there is some Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding available for utilities, the money will not cover the billions of dollars in operations and management costs that will be required as long as these chemicals are present in our nation’s drinking water sources due to the manufacture and use of PFAS broadly in commerce.

AMWA is also concerned that compliance with the new rule will require community water systems across the country to eventually dispose of water treatment residuals containing certain PFAS that EPA has also proposed to designate as hazardous substances. While AMWA appreciates that EPA has suggested an enforcement discretion policy to help community water systems avoid future liability related to environmental cleanups of these substances, AMWA will continue to urge Congress to codify these liability protections to ensure polluters pay for the cost of environmental PFAS cleanup.

AMWA supports EPA’s efforts to protect public health by ensuring safe, clean drinking water at an affordable rate. The final regulation for several PFAS will prove exceedingly costly for the communities and ratepayers across the country that are already struggling to replace lead service lines, address water scarcity, and upgrade aging infrastructure. There simply are not enough federal funds to offset the large increases in water bills that will be required to support utilities' operational and capital investments and EPA’s growing list of mandates. Ultimately, additional federal support will be necessary to help community water systems maintain water affordability while also complying with EPA’s new rules.


The Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies (AMWA) has been the unified and definitive voice for the nation's largest publicly owned water systems for over 40 years. AMWA's membership serves more than 160 million people with safe drinking water.

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