EPA Science Advisory Board Meeting Discusses PFAS and Action Items

On June 5-6, EPA’s Science Advisory Board (SAB) held a meeting to hear remarks from Administrator Wheeler, receive briefings from EPA, and discuss opportunities for input on a number of Agency efforts. Following are some key points from the meeting that should be of interest to state drinking water programs.

Jennifer McLain of EPA’s Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water and Andrew Gillespie of EPA’s National Exposure Research Laboratory provided an update on EPA’s PFAS Action Plan efforts including: the Agency’s continuing work with Federal partners to develop a risk communication toolbox; the selection of 150 PFAS compounds for the development of high-throughput screening assays with expected results by the end of the year; the addition of 60 PFAS compounds in the ECOTOX system; the development of a new direct injection method for 26 more PFAS compounds expected in the next few months; the continuation of air emissions and drinking water treatment pilots; the development of site remediation tools, data, and guidance; and technical assistance for states and water systems.

SAB actions identified during the meeting included:

  • Preparing for a consultation with Administrator Wheeler next fall (per his request) on EPA’s proposed Science and Transparency Rule that considers access to Confidential Business Information and Personally Identifiable Information.
  • Engaging with EPA in a scientific regulatory review of the Clean Air Act, air quality standards, and greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Preparing questions to develop input on EPA’s update of the Carcinogen and Non-cancer Assessment Guidelines.
  • Developing a commentary for EPA on the scientific considerations for EPA’s Clean Water Act proposed Waters of the U.S. Rule, including the use of geospatial analysis tools and considerations for wetlands, ephemeral streams, and shallow groundwater.

For more information, visit the SAB website.