[Opinion] No loopholes for polluters: Those responsible for PFAS must pay

July 7, 2023

Read the full article by Mark Ruffalo (The Hill)

"Companies have made tens of billions of dollars creating and using toxic “forever chemicals” known as PFAS, creating the biggest environmental contamination crisis in human history. PFAS makers and users have contaminated the blood of every living creature on the planet with chemicals that will never break down and have been linked to cancer and other serious health problems.

Many of these companies hid the risks of PFAS, an abbreviation for perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances, from their workers and their regulators. The lethal impacts of PFAS might still be a secret if not for the efforts of legendary environmental attorney Robert Bilott, who I was proud to portray in the movie “Dark Waters.”

Now that the scope of this environmental crime has been revealed, many companies are seeking exemptions from our federal cleanup laws.

Congress and the Biden administration must not let PFAS polluters shirk their responsibility to clean up their mess. Exempting some polluters from sharing the cost of cleaning up Superfund sites, as some members of Congress have proposed, will leave other companies and taxpayers bearing the cost. These PFAS “polluter holiday” bills will also undermine the “polluter pays” principle that encourages polluters to think twice before they dump their toxic wastes on the rest of us."