Warren Joins Shaheen, Collins in Bipartisan Call on President Biden to Fund PFAS Research & Remediation in FY2023 Budget
Washington, D.C. – United States Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) joined Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H), Susan Collins (R-Maine) and 30 other senators in a bipartisan letter urging President Biden to prioritize robust funding to combat per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in the fiscal year (FY) 2023 budget request to Congress. In the letter, the senators ask for funding to support agencies and programs that will help close gaps in PFAS research, protect public health and the environment from PFAS contamination, and support testing and cleanup of contaminated sites.
“Too many people in Massachusetts have been exposed to harmful PFAS chemicals – including residents of communities with contaminated groundwater, first responders, servicemembers and veterans,” said Senator Warren. “We need to continue the fight to fully fund research, public health, and environmental measures so that no more Americans have to face the health impacts these chemicals inflict.”
Exposure to PFAS chemicals, which often happens through contaminated groundwater, in workplaces, or during military service, causes numerous health effects, including developmental effects, changes in liver, immune, and thyroid function and increased risk of some cancers.
In the letter, Senator Warren and her colleagues urged President Biden to include detailed funding plans in his FY 2023 budget request to Congress that would use a broad range of agencies and programs to address PFAS contamination and exposure. They asked for resources to close the PFAS research and data gaps and fund innovation. Warren and her colleagues also urged President Biden to include stronger regulatory protections for public health and the environment, and sustained funding for current PFAS testing and cleanup programs.
Responding to PFAS contaminants in Massachusetts communities has been a top priority for Senator Warren:
- In December 2021, Senator Warren joined Senators Shaheen and Murkowski, along with a group of 19 senators, in sending a letter to the Department of Defense (DOD), in response to the DOD’s Inspector General report on per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) exposure mitigation and prevention at DOD installations.
- In November 2021, Senator Warren joined Senator Gillibrand and Representative Kildee, along with a group of 18 senators and 25 representatives, in sending a letter to the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) urging the agency to ensure airports are able to use PFAS-free firefighting foam.
- In October 2021, Senator Warren joined Senator Gillibrand, along with a group of 16 senators, in sending a letter to the EPA to expand and strengthen regulatory efforts to address industrial PFAS discharges, specifically through the EPA’s PFAS roadmap plan.
- In March 2021, Senator Warren joined Senator Gillibrand as a cosponsor of the Clean Water Standards for PFAS Act of 2021.
- In February 2020, Senator Warren sent a letter with her Senate colleagues calling on the EPA to deliver on promises it made on its PFAS Action Plan.
- In December 2019, Senator Warren introduced the Affordable Safe Drinking Water Act, a bicameral bill that would provide Massachusetts and other states with more tools to mitigate water infrastructure costs to deliver water free from PFAS chemicals and lead.
- On March 20, 2019, Senator Warren joined Senators Shaheen and Hassan, along with a group of 15 senators, in sending a letter to then-Acting Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan and EPA Administrator Wheeler, requesting that the agencies release communications with the White House, and interagency communications, regarding the establishment of federal drinking water standards for PFAS and groundwater pollution guidelines related to these chemicals.
- In March 2019, Senator Warren joined Senator Carper as a cosponsor of the PFAS Action Act of 2019.
- In February 2019, Senator Warren joined Senators Shaheen and Capito in sending a letter to then-Acting EPA Administrator Wheeler, expressing concern about reports that the agency would not establish enforceable drinking water standards for PFOA and PFOS as part of its National PFAS Management Plan.
- In December 2018, Senator Warren sent a letter with her Senate colleagues urging the CDC and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry to sufficiently study the health effects of PFAS exposure, particularly for firefighters.
- In August 2018, Senator Warren filed two amendments to the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, one of which would require the CDC to conduct a study on the health implications of PFAS exposure for firefighters, police officers, and first responders.
Next Article Previous Article