EPA Rule Update – Post from Lewis, Longman & Walker, P.A.

by Lauren D. Brooks

June 25, 2024 

An expected surge of litigation related to “forever chemicals” continues to pick up speed after the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency finalized new PFAS limits for drinking water.

The EPA rule, published April 10, requires public water systems to remove the majority of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, known as PFAS, from consumers’ drinking water by 2029.

Earlier this month, on June 7, the American Water Works Association and Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies challenged the rule in the federal Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, alleging that it is not based on the best science and most recent data, that EPA did not follow the process mandated by Congress, and it fails to consider the impact on water affordability because it underestimates the cost of implementation.

Three days later, the National Association of Manufacturers and the American Chemistry Council also filed a petition in the same court, raising similar allegations.

In addition to the rule challenges, in the past year numerous chemical manufacturing companies have settled PFAS suits with public water systems, including a $10.3 billion settlement from 3M. The settlement funds are aimed at helping affected public water systems remove PFAS in drinking water. Some attorneys have predicted that PFAS lawsuits will result in the largest settlements in history.

LLW will continue to send updates as the cases progress.

The petitions challenging the EPA’s new drinking water rule are linked below.

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