Vermont Updates PFAS Drinking Water Health Advisory and Expands Testing Plan for School Pilot

download (1)On July 10th, the Vermont Department of Health published a press release announcing that it has updated its drinking water health advisory for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and has launched a new statewide testing pilot for PFAS at ten schools.

  • Updated Health Advisory:  The state has updated its drinking water health advisory of 20 parts per trillion (ppt) for PFOA and PFOS combined, to now include three more compounds, for a combined total of 20 ppt for all five of the following PFAS compounds:  PFOA, PFOS, PFHxS, PFHpA, and PFNA. The previous health advisory of 20 ppt for PFOA and PFOS combined was issued in 2016 following the discovery of PFOA in private wells and one public drinking water supply well in the state. The state revised this health advisory after it expanded testing for the five compounds and found additional sites with higher levels of PFAS, including PFHxS and PFHpA. All five PFAS compounds now included in the health advisory can be effectively removed from drinking water with the use of carbon filtration point-of-entry treatment systems. The state has reviewed all of its PFAS test results, notified the limited number of locations that have exceeded the updated health advisory, and will work with the communities to conduct follow up actions and install treatment, if necessary.
  • Statewide Testing Pilot for PFAS at Ten Schools:  The state has launched a new statewide testing pilot for PFAS at ten schools as part of the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation’s (DEC) broader PFAS sampling approach. These schools were selected because they have on-site drinking water wells and are more likely to be affected by the use of cleaning products that contained PFAS where the cleaning water was emptied directly into the school’s septic system.

For more information, read the press release. To find out more information about health and PFAS in drinking water, visit the Health Department’s website. For more information about Vermont’s PFAS sampling plan and information for affected communities, visit the DEC PFOA webpage.