Maryland to begin testing drinking water, Chesapeake Bay oysters for harmful ‘forever chemicals’ known as PFAS

Baltimore Sun discusses how Maryland will begin testing drinking water and Chesapeake Bay oysters for PFAS.

Maryland regulators say they plan to test drinking water and Chesapeake Bay oysters for the presence of what are known as “forever chemicals” — a step toward potential regulation of a class of harmful human-made substances that some fear are ubiquitous.

PFAS — per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances — are found in everything from stain-repellent fabrics and nonstick cookware to cleaning products and firefighting foams. They are spreading into soil and groundwater from landfills and firefighting training sites. And they can build up in humans and animals through exposure from drinking water, seafood and older consumer products.

The Maryland Department of the Environment is finalizing a plan to collect hundreds of samples from drinking water sources around the state amid growing concern from studies linking the chemicals to liver, kidney and reproductive dysfunction, high cholesterol levels and tumor growth.

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