Recently detected drinking water contaminants: genX and other Per- and polyfluoroalkyl ether acids.

Hopkins, Z. R.; Sun, M.; DeWitt, J. C.; Knappe, D. R. U.

Journal – American Water Works Association, 110 (7):13-28; 10.1002/awwa.1073 2018

Abstract:For several decades, a common processing aid in the production of fluoropolymers was the ammonium salt of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA). Because PFOA is persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic, its production and use are being phased out in the United States. In 2009, the US Environmental Protection Agency stipulated conditions for the manufacture and commercial use of GenX, a PFOA replacement. While GenX is produced for commercial purposes, the acid form of GenX is also generated as a byproduct during the production of fluoromonomers. The discovery of high concentrations of GenX and related perfluoroalkyl ether acids (PFEAs) in the Cape Fear River and in finished drinking water of more than 200,000 North Carolina residents required quick action by researchers, regulators, public health officials, commercial laboratories, drinking water providers, and consulting engineers. Information about sources and toxicity of GenX as well as an analytical method for the detection of GenX and eight related PFEAs is presented. GenX/PFEA occurrence in water and GenX/PFEA removal by different drinking water treatment processes are also discussed. © 2018 American Water Works Association.

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