PFAS

Team Lifespan: January 2017 - December 2023

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The ITRC PFAS Update Team is producing comprehensive guidance updates and new resources to help regulators and other stakeholders improve their understanding of the current science regarding per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).

The materials developed by the ITRC PFAS Team currently available include:

A series of fact sheets that synthesize key information for the following core subjects: (1) Naming Conventions, (2) Regulations, Guidance, and Advisories, (3) History and Use, (4) Fate and Transport and Physical and Chemical Properties, (5) Sampling Precautions and Laboratory Analytical Methods, (6) Site Characterization and Media-Specific Occurrence, (7) Treatment Technologies and Methods, (8) Aqueous Film-Forming Foam (AFFF), (9) Human and Ecological Health Effects and Risk Assessment, (10) Risk Communication, and (11) Stakeholder Perspectives. The fact sheets were first published between 2017 - 2018, and updated in 2020.

A web-based technical and regulatory guidance document published by the ITRC PFAS Team in 2020 that presents the necessary breadth and depth not given by the fact sheets, stakeholder points of view, technical challenges and uncertainties, risk communication strategies, and provides links to pertinent scientific literature. In 2021, ITRC plans to update the technical and regulatory guidance document with new data and information that become available reflecting the rapidly evolving science and regulatory approaches for PFAS. 

Online training materials that convey the information presented in the technical and regulatory guidance document. Ten video training modules and brief introductory videos on the topics are posted on ITRC’s YouTube channel. Additionally, the Team provided in-person and online training workshops to approximately 3,000 attendees from 2018 to 2020. In 2020 and 2021, the team launched a new training format and held four Roundtable Webinars on select PFAS topics where participants asked PFAS expert panelists specific questions.

Background

PFAS are a large and complex class of anthropogenic compounds whose prevalence in the environment are an emerging, worldwide priority in environmental and human health. Some PFAS are environmentally persistent and bioaccumulative and may pose human health risks. Recent high-profile cases involving human exposure in the United States have further focused both public and regulatory scrutiny on PFAS.

The scientific community’s understanding of PFAS sources, site characterization, environmental fate and transport, analytical methods, toxicity, regulation, and treatment technologies is growing rapidly, and the ITRC PFAS Team has prepared readily accessible materials to present this information to stakeholders, regulators, and policy makers. The PFAS Update Team will facilitate the review and dissemination of newer research regarding not only the replacement PFAS, but also the increased understanding of many issues either addressed in an introductory manner in the current guidance document or only recently identified as a potential area of concern. Upcoming and existing materials can be used to foster development of a broad technical understanding necessary for informed and expedited decisions to address PFAS impacts to human health and the environment.

Team Leaders

Sandra Goodrow
Sandra.Goodrow@dep.nj.gov

Kate Emma Schlosser