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Companies Knew Decades Ago that PFAS Chemicals Cause Significant Harm to Human Health

(Hartford, CT) – Today, Clean Water Action joined Connecticut Attorney General William Tong at a press event where he filed two lawsuits against 28 chemical manufacturers responsible for knowingly contaminating Connecticut waters and natural resources and harming public health with toxic PFAS “forever chemicals.”

The two complaints seek to hold the companies responsible for dangerous PFAS chemical contamination from two sources—aqueous film forming foam (AFFF) used in firefighting, and chemicals used in manufacturing and added to consumer products, such as food packaging, cookware, carpeting, upholstery, clothing, and cosmetics, to make products resistant to stains, water, and heat.
Today, nearly all humans have PFAS in their blood. PFAS chemicals are toxic and can persist in the environment indefinitely. PFAS chemicals can travel through the environment, including into drinking water sources, and accumulate in human blood. Even modest releases of PFAS can cause widespread pollution and damage. PFAS is known to cause severe adverse human health effects, including increased risk of kidney, breast, pancreas, prostate, and testicular cancers, liver damage, decreased birth weight and birth defects, decreased vaccine response, high cholesterol, infertility, and diabetes.
The complaints seek both injunctive and monetary relief—compelling the companies to dispose of their toxic chemical stocks, abate all pollution in Connecticut, disclose all research, and to compensate the state for past and future remediation and testing expenses. The complaints seek tens of thousands of dollars per day in penalties for widespread violations of numerous state laws dating back decades.
“PFAS chemicals are a toxic menace to human health and our environment. These companies knew the truth decades ago, and they buried the evidence and lied to all of us. Because of that, we are dealing with widespread contamination of drinking water and natural resources across Connecticut. We are seeking to hold some of the world’s largest chemical manufacturers accountable for this massive public health and environmental catastrophe. We are demanding that these companies pay to remediate this pollution and are penalized so that nothing like this ever happens again.  We are also demanding that these companies come clean and disclose all of their hidden research to ensure our state, and our country, has what we need to remediate this threat and protect families,” said Attorney General Tong.

"As a nurse and environmental health advocate, I want to thank Attorney General Tong and his staff for their strong and consistent leadership on holding polluters accountable for the harms caused by toxic PFAS chemicals.  The Attorney General's action assures that the burden of dealing with this toxic contamination does not fall on the backs of Connecticut residents or the state,” said Anne Hulick, Connecticut Director for Clean Water Action.

Click here to read the full press release from Attorney General Tong.



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Anne Hulick
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