WESTFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – PFAS chemical contamination has been an ongoing problem in Westfield for years but it’s not the only community dealing with the toxic chemicals.
It’s estimated 1400 communities nationally have PFAS contamination.
Friday morning the U.S. House passed legislation that establishes federal regulations to address PFAS chemical contamination.
Over 100 million people are estimated to have drinking water contaminated by PFAS according to the Environmental Working Group.
For years, state representatives from all over the country have tried to pass legislation that would help communities with contaminated water from PFAS chemicals.
Now, the House has passed a bill that would designate two common types of PFAS as hazardous substances.
“People have really been speaking out for their communities and speaking up for the municipalities that are baring not only the medical costs and the health costs but also the financial costs of PFAS contamination,” said Westfield City Councilor Kristen Mello.
Under the bill, the Environmental Protection Agency would have to establish drinking water regulations for PFAS chemicals. It would also require polluters to clean up PFAS contamination, provide funding and testing, and minimize the use of firefighting foam and other equipment containing the chemicals.
The bill will now have to be passed in the Senate. However, President Trump’s Administration threatened to veto the bill if it were to pass both the House and Senate.