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Op-Ed: NJ Must Tackle its Growing ‘Forever-Chemical’ Problem

Updated: Aug 6, 2022

by Eileen Murphy vice president of government relations at NJ Audubon Society

May 19, 2022 |

Addressing forever chemicals — aka perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) —in the Delaware River is critical to maintaining a healthy drinking-water supply for the more than 17 million people that rely on the Delaware River watershed, including two of the five largest cities in the United States — New York City and Philadelphia. In New Jersey, recent reporting from the state’s Department of Environmental Protection shows that about 6% of the state’s 9.2 million residents are drinking water from systems contaminated by PFAS.

NJ SEED: NJ, as a national leader is tackling the issue of “forever chemicals”, recognizes that while eliminating them from our water supplies is enormously important it is a very, very expensive undertaking. To advocate that NJ launch a broad program of attack on over 12,000 PFAS rather than a chemical-by-chemical approach may seem ideal but is at best unrealistic. Speeding up the process of identifying the most dangerous chemicals that show up in the water supply and removing their threat needs to become a national priority.

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