COON RAPIDS, MINNESOTA - Clean Water Action and the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy (MCEA) have partnered to hold a PFAS prevention community town hall on Sunday, February 26th at noon at the Minnesota Star Martials Art Center in Coon Rapids, MN. The town hall will feature authors of the legislation, community leaders, and residents.
The town hall will address the three major pieces of PFAS prevention legislation that Clean Water Action and the MCEA are supporting. The Information Disclosure (SF450/HF372) bill would require manufacturers to disclose the amount of PFAS they’re using, in which products it’s being used, and how it’s being used. The PFAS Non-Essential Use Ban (SF834/HF1000) would ban the sale of PFAS in all products other than those considered “essential” in Minnesota. The Firefighting Foam Loophole Closure (SF776/HF742) would ban all uses of PFAS in firefighting foams that are not currently required by federal law.
“Financially this makes sense. We can’t keep paying to clean up messes while simultaneously making more. It’s unsustainable. If we don’t ban the sale of items with PFAS, we risk becoming a dumping ground,” said Avonna Starck, Clean Water Action Minnesota State Director. “PFAS will further contaminate our valuable waters, putting human health at risk.”
PFAS are a class of nearly 5,000 human-made chemicals which includes Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl substances. These chemicals contain chains of fluorine-carbon bonds, which are very stable and difficult to destroy. The stability of PFAS chemicals make them incredibly persistent, and their mobility makes them bioaccumulate in humans and the environment.
PFAS are in need of immediate policy action due to their wide-spread use in products, prevalence in breast milk and people’s bodies, and persistence in the environment. Known as “forever chemicals'' due to their inability to break down, PFAS also persists in the waste stream, contaminating our soil, air, and water. PFAS chemicals have been tied to reduced immune system responses, multiple types of cancer, thyroid disease, low birth weight, pre-eclampsia, low IQ in children, learning disabilities, and more.
“We are proud to host this event. We believe that the community deserves a voice in the legislative process and as the parents of four children we value safe, healthy water,” said James and Kelly Franklin, co-owners of the Minnesota Star Martials Art Center. “No matter what political party you belong to, we can agree that water quality is central to Minnesotans way of life.”
Minnesota Representative Jeff Brand, Senator Judy Seeberger, and Senator Tou Xiong are confirmed to attend.
About Clean Water Action
Clean Water Action works at the national, state and local level to develop strong, community-based environmental leadership and bring together diverse constituencies to work cooperatively for policies that improve lives and protect water. Clean Water Action has been in Minnesota since 1982, focused on finding solutions to health, consumer, environmental and community problems and working to protect our water and our people. Learn more at www.cleanwater.org/MN.
About the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy
For nearly half a century, MCEA has worked to enact and enforce smart environmental laws in Minnesota. With offices in St. Paul and Duluth and a team that includes some of the state's foremost environmental law and policy professionals, MCEA educates about issues and supports communities in their fight to protect their environment. MCEA is unique in Minnesota in its use of top legal expertise in the pursuit of environmental justice. For more information, visit www.mncenter.org