Saturday, May 28, 2022

Play

High gas prices are not slowing down Memorial Day travel, early voting starts tomorrow in Nevada, and Oregon activists seek accountability for dioxin contamination in low-income Eugene.

Play

Education Secretary Cardona calls for action after the Texas massacre, Republicans block a domestic terrorism vote, and Secretary of State Blinken calls China the greatest challenger to U.S. and its allies.

Play

High-speed internet is being used to entice remote workers to rural communities, Georgia is offering Black women participation in a guaranteed income initiative, and under-resourced students in Montana get a boost toward graduation.

NY Enacts New PFAS Testing, Notification Law

Play

Friday, January 7, 2022   

A new law on the books in New York establishes the most comprehensive drinking-water testing and notification program in the nation for Perfluorinated and Polyfluorinated Substances (PFAS), substances known as "forever chemicals."

Rob Hayes, director of clean water for Environmental Advocates NY, said every water utility across the state will have to test for the nearly two dozen toxic chemicals on the state's first list of emerging contaminants.

He pointed out notifications will be sent to the public if unsafe levels are detected in drinking water.

"New Yorkers are about to finally find out what's in their water and if they're being exposed to toxic PFAS chemicals," Hayes explained. "We're going to see testing, hopefully starting this year, and then, there will be regular testing happening for new contaminants every so often after that."

High exposure to PFAS chemicals has been found to negatively impact human health and the environment. Backers of the new law urged the state Department of Health to set notification levels for low amounts of every emerging contaminant listed.

Clean-water advocacy groups have been pushing for transparency about toxic chemicals for more than four years.

Manna Jo Greene, environmental action director for Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, said the legislation ties in with the new Green Amendment voters overwhelmingly passed on the November ballot.

"It's an actual amendment to the New York State Constitution that guarantees the right to clean air, clean water and a healthy environment," Greene outlined. "This is a specific way to implement and ensure those rights."

In recent years, New York has enacted several bills to eliminate the use of PFAS chemicals in products like firefighting foam and food packaging. Hayes hopes to see even more efforts to ban them in other products.

"Because really, if we want to prevent water contamination, we have to stop these chemicals at the source," Hayes contended. "When we put them into products, they end up in our environment, and they put public health at risk."

He noted a second list, including 14 more chemicals as emerging contaminants will be published in coming years. Under the law, the New York Department of Health must update the list of emerging contaminants at least every three years.


get more stories like this via email
Early voting locations will be open across Nevada for several weeks, from May 28 through June 10. (Jlmcanally/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

The Nevada primary election is June 14, and early voting starts tomorrow and runs through June 10. Mail balloting is now permanent, so every active …


Social Issues

Democrats in the Florida Legislature are reviving calls for stricter gun-control laws, following the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas. Florida's …

Environment

This week, in honor of World Otter Day, conservation groups are looking to raise awareness about efforts to restore sea otters along more areas of …


There's been a roughly 38% drop in drowning deaths over the past two decades. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

With the unofficial start to summer, pools around Ohio are opening this Memorial Day weekend, and when it comes to swim time, experts encourage …

Environment

Memorial Day weekend marks the beginning of water recreation season, and before putting on a swimsuit, Iowa environmental experts say being mindful …

A 2019 report from the Economic Policy Institute found teacher shortages were especially acute in higher-poverty schools. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

As the nation processes the horrific shooting in Uvalde, where 19 children and two teachers were killed, teachers' unions across Illinois and America …

Social Issues

The cost of heading out of town this Memorial Day weekend will be higher than past years, with higher gas prices and inflation hitting travelers…

Health and Wellness

One of Connecticut's largest health systems launched a new resource in Hartford this month, aimed at helping patients access healthy and nutritious …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021