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Environmental groups call on public to submit comments on PFAS rule by Friday deadline

water faucet
Flickr user Bart

If you want to weigh in on the state's proposal to regulate seven different types of PFAS chemicals found in drinking water, you have until midnight on Friday, January, 31.

Environmental groups are urging people to submit written comments.

Public comments may be sentby email or by U.S. mail postmarked by January 31 to the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy.

Nick Dodge, communications director for the Michigan League of Conservation Voters, said it is critical for the public to call for the toughest limits for PFAS chemicals in drinking water. 

"With the utter lack of action from the federal level on PFAS and drinking water protections in general," said Dodge. "It's really up to the state and at the state level to take action to protect our water."

Dodge said PFAS chemicals have been found in the drinking water of communities across the state. 

"The reason why public comment is really so important is people are motivated. They're activated. They want something done," said Dodge. "And we have a real opportunity to make our voices heard."

Dodge said the state's proposed PFAS limits are a step in the right direction, but they need to be strengthened. 

The Michigan League of Conservation Voters and other environmental groups want the state to set a combined limit for all toxic contaminants, instead of smaller limits for each. And they want the PFAS standard to be protective of groups most susceptible to the negative health effects of PFAS exposure, such as children, pregnant women, the elderly, and those suffering from chronic illnesses.

Some kinds of PFAS have been linked to serious health issues, including cancer.

Earlier this month. EGLE heldthree public hearings on its plans to set enforceable drinking water standards for the PFAS chemicals.

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Virginia Gordan has been a part-time reporter at Michigan Radio since fall 2013. She has a general beat covering news topics from across the state.
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