Although useful, PFAS (or highly fluorinated chemicals) are associated with serious health harm and can remain in the environment forever. Below are selected resources to the most common questions about PFAS.
What Are PFAS?
Highly fluorinated chemicals, sometimes referred to as PFCs or PFASs, are used in many consumer products and industrial applications because of their oil-, stain-, and water-repellent properties. Examples of chemicals in this class include PFOA, PFOS, and more than 4,700 related compounds. To learn more about PFAS visit our PFAS Basics Page.
What products may contain PFAS?
One of the best ways to prevent PFAS exposure is to purchase PFAS free merchandise. Visit our PFAS-Free page to find sustainable products.
Factsheets & educational resources
- Fluorinated Alternatives: Myths versus Factsheet about short-chain and other alternatives highly fluorinated chemicals.
- PFAS in drinking water: the need for a coordinated strategy– a letter from scientists to policymakers.
- SixClasses.org– a webinar series on the six classes of harmful chemicals commonly used in consumer products, including highly fluorinated chemicals.
- Our extensive bibliography.
- EWG’s guide to avoiding PFAS– a factsheet on highly fluorinated chemicals from the Environmental Working Group (EWG).
- Poisoned Legacy– an investigative report on highly fluorinated chemicals from the Environmental Working Group (EWG).
- EnviroWIKI PFASs– a wiki focusing on remediation of soil and groundwater contaminated by highly fluorinated chemicals.
- List of highly fluorinated chemicals in global commerce – from Appendix 2 of the Swedish Chemicals Agency (KEMI) report “Occurrence and use of highly fluorinated substances and alternatives”, published in 2015
- Toxics action center PFAS factsheet
What to do if PFAS is in my water?
- Algoma PFAS Fact Sheet
- EPA PFOA and PFOS Drinking Water Health Advisories
- NH PFAS factsheet
- NSF List of filters for home
- NJ Drinking water filtration report
- Michigan Department of Environmental Quality factsheet
Summaries of regulatory limits/guideline values
- ITRC PFAS Fact Sheets- a thorough compilation authored by the Interstate Technology and Regulatory Council's team of expert volunteers. Tables 4 and 5 summarize regulatory limits for PFAS from jurisdictions around the world.
- Global list of PFAS guideline values– a global compilation of PFAS guideline values for water, soil, and other matrices, as well as total daily intakes and blood health values. (This list was compiled by Dr. Jimmy Seow, Department of Environment Regulation, Western Australia, and is up-to-date as of April, 2018.)
- PFAS Policy
Scientific & industry statements
- The Madrid Statement– a scientific consensus statement regarding the persistence and potential for harm of highly fluorinated chemicals, with a roadmap to reducing their use in consumer products. On May 1, 2015, The Madrid Statement was published in the high-impact scientific journal Environmental Health Perspectives – find it here.
- Comment on “Fluorotechnology is critical to modern life: The FluoroCouncil Counterpoint to the Madrid Statement” – our comments on the FluoroCouncil’s response to the Madrid Statement
- The Helsingør Statement – a summary of the key scientific concerns about the potential impacts of fluorinated alternatives on human health and the environment.
- Alternatives to PFASs: Perspectives on the Science – an editorial about the Madrid Statement by distinguished scientists Linda Birnbaum and Philippe Grandjean.
- PFAS Science