The Latest on the ‘Forever Chemicals’: An Overview of Per and Polyfluoroalkyl (PFAS) Substances
Per and polyfluoroalkyl substances (often called PFAS) are man-made (synthetic) chemicals that have properties that allow them to repel substances such as water and oil. Hence, they are found in many different consumer, commercial, and industrial products. PFAS chemicals are used in various applications and products from fire fighting foam to food packaging, non-stick cookware, stain-resistant furniture and carpets, water-repellent clothes, cleaning products and more.
PFAS enter the environment from a variety of sources including manufacturing facilities; locations where they are used such as fires / fire practice; disposed of and/or spilled. Chemical plants, industrial facilities, landfills, and wastewater treatment plants may all contribute PFAS to the environment. Once in the environment, PFAS chemicals are long lasting, and tend to break down very slowly over time allowing them to impact the food chain or perhaps our water supplies. As we learn more about these substances, and their fate in the environment concerns are developing around the potential for harmful effects on fish, animals, and humans.
This webinar will highlight the PFAS surveillance that Ministry of Environment, Conservation, and Parks has carried out across Ontario and discuss the recent drinking water guideline consultations from Health Canada and the United States Environmental Protection Agency.
Justin Pulleyblank, OMWA President
Supervisor of Water Distribution, ENWIN Utilities Ltd
Justin is currently a Supervisor of Water Distribution working for ENWIN Utilities in the City of Windsor. With 22 years experience within the water distribution field, Justin has been involved in various committees and working groups within the industry. Justin joined the OMWA board in 2020 and was recently elected President of OMWA.
Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP)
Satish Deshpande is in the Drinking Water Standards Unit in the Environmental Sciences and Standards Division at the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks. He is Ontario’s representative on the Federal-Provincial-Territorial Committee on Drinking Water that develops the Canadian Drinking Water Quality Guidelines. He also responds to emergency spills that may impact drinking water systems.
Water Quality Technologist for City of Ottawa
Andy Campbell has worked in various roles within the Water Quality section of the City of Ottawa’s Drinking Water branch for the past 31 years and has been involved with numerous process improvements and upgrades at Ottawa’s two Water Purification Plant’s and six communal well systems. In the past decade, Andy has been involved with a multitude of corrosion control studies both in-home and in Ottawa’s Pilot facility. Andy has also been involved in a number of research studies involving the Water Research Foundation, National Science & Engineering Research Council, Health Canada, and several Canadian