EPA proposes new PFAS limits for drinking water. Here's how it could impact Virginia
The Environmental Protection Agency proposed new limits in drinking water for six PFAS compounds, including GEN-X.
Increasing scientific research has shown that these compounds may be harmful to humans.
If the new EPA rules, proposed March 14, go into effect, all water systems in Virginia would be required to test for PFAS, and might be required to reduce contamination in their water.
Currently, testing for these compounds is voluntary in the state. According to the Virginia Department of Health, 23 out of 69 water systems had at least one PFAS detected.
One was in the Roanoke Valley, where Gen-X was first discovered in the water supply back in 2020. Last summer, the EPA issued a lifetime health advisory for Gen-X, and the Western Virginia Water Authority stopped pumping water from the Roanoke River into their Spring Hollow reservoir.
The water authority has continued to test and filter all of their finished drinking water since then, and says the water reaching customers currently is safe to drink.
The new EPA rules for PFAS have not been finalized. The earliest they would take effect in Virginia would be 2026.