The Rising Concern Surrounding PFAS

     Our research explores per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) or “forever chemicals” in Washington, DC drinking water. PFAS chemicals are widley recognized to be in 99% of all Americans, some researchers believing that they are in virtually all living beings on Earth. While PFAS pollution has been an environmental and public health issue for decades, the issue of PFAS in drinking water has been widely under-studied and under-regulated. Discussions about PFAS in government, academic, and scientific circles are emerging and growing. This research takes an exploratory approach to examining PFAS in Washington, DC drinking water. We interviewed various experts for the project including activists, scientists, academics, and policymakers. We also conducted water tests for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances in various sources of tap water across DC. Finally, we examined scholarly literature and journalistic sources. Our research enabled us to examine PFAS in social, regulatory, scientific, and public health contexts, exploring the extent to which PFAS pollution in drinking water is an environmental justice issue in Washington, DC.  

PFAS Representation in the Media

John Oliver takes a deep dive into PFAS chemical pollution and its impact on human health. 

                                                                                                                                                                                            Last updated May, 2023