Harmful per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are an urgent public health and environmental issue facing communities across the United States. PFAS have been manufactured and used in a variety of industries in the United States and around the globe since the 1940s, and they are still being used today. Because of the duration and breadth of use, PFAS can be found in surface water, groundwater, soil, and air—from remote rural areas to densely-pop- ulated urban centers. A growing body of scientific evidence shows that exposure at certain levels to specific PFAS can adversely impact human health and other living things. Despite these concerns, PFAS are still used in a wide range of consumer products and industrial applications.
Every level of government—federal, Tribal, state, and local—needs to exercise increased and sus- tained leadership to accelerate progress to clean up PFAS contamination, prevent new contami- nation, and make game-changing breakthroughs in the scientific understanding of PFAS. The EPA Council on PFAS developed this strategic road- map to lay out EPA’s whole-of-agency approach to addressing PFAS. To deliver needed protections for the American people, the roadmap sets time- lines by which the Agency plans to take specific actions during the first term of the Biden-Harris Administration. The strategic roadmap builds on and accelerates implementation of policy actions identified in the Agency’s 2019 action plan and commits to bolder new policies to safeguard public health, protect the environment, and hold polluters accountable.
The risks posed by PFAS demand that the Agency attack the problem on multiple fronts at the same time. EPA must leverage the full range of statutory authorities to confront the human health and eco- logical risks of PFAS. The actions described in this document each represent important and meaningful steps to safeguard communities from PFAS con- tamination. Cumulatively, these actions will build upon one another and lead to more enduring and protective solutions.
EPA’s integrated approach to PFAS is focused on three central directives:
• Research. Invest in research, development, and innovation to increase understanding of PFAS exposures and toxicities, human health and ecological effects, and effective interventions that incorporate the best available science.
• Restrict. Pursue a comprehensive approach to proactively prevent PFAS from entering air, land, and water at levels that can adversely impact human health and the environment.
• Remediate. Broaden and accelerate the cleanup of PFAS contamination to protect human health and ecological systems.