A bunch of lawmakers and advocates gathered in Lansing Tuesday to announce the anticipated rollout of a giant set of payments concentrating on poisonous “without end chemical compounds,” which have lengthy plagued Michigan’s ingesting water, soil and air.
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are man-made substances, usually byproducts of producing, that pose threats to public well being. The Michigan PFAS Motion Response Group (MPART), has to this point recognized greater than 230 websites within the state with PFAS contamination and 11,000 extra potential websites.
The state has additionally set the tightest requirements within the nation for figuring out and treating PFAS contamination in 2020.
With Democrats accountable for the Legislature this time period, lawmakers say they’re making additional motion on the difficulty a excessive precedence.
“I’ve seen firsthand how in my very own district these without end chemical compounds and the well being problems that they trigger are impacting residents,” stated state Rep. Rachel Hood (D-Grand Rapids).
“ … Legislators are working now to arrange a package deal of payments, and I think about that we are going to be dropping payments properly into 2024. This can be a actually advanced legislative space, deeply entrenched in rising science that generally adjustments from one week to the following,” Hood stated.
She added that lawmakers are ensuring the payments are hermetic to allow them to transfer rapidly throughout committee desks, then to the chamber ground “when the time is true.”
Hood stated the primary payments may be anticipated by mid-June or earlier, and can doubtless goal PFAS in packaging, cosmetics and different shopper merchandise.
The wide-ranging legislative priorities that can ultimately translate into Home payments embrace assist for PFAS-impacted communities, more practical contamination cleanup, elevated funding for regulatory businesses that cope with PFAS and accountability for polluters.
“We’re calling for coverage options to stop future PFAS contamination, and that begins with stopping PFAS on the supply,” stated Sandy Wynn-Stelt, co-chair of the Nice Lakes PFAS Motion Community.
“Legislatures in states throughout the nation and Midwest have already handed legal guidelines to guard their residents’ well being and deal with this problem. We sit up for working with lawmakers in Michigan to make sure we’re passing comparable insurance policies to steer on the combat in opposition to PFAS,” Wynn-Stelt continued.
Lawmakers additionally famous that whereas the Legislature works on the state finances for the approaching 2024 Fiscal 12 months, they’re ensuring to put aside funds devoted to water infrastructure tasks, water remedy crops, stormwater and ingesting water safety, environmental justice and web site cleanup.
The total listing of priorities, together with proposed legislative options, embrace:
- Defending and supporting PFAS-impacted communities.
- Guarantee protected water availability
- Codify MPART and MPART’s Citizen’s Advisory Workgroup (CAWG)
- Require insurance coverage suppliers to cowl the prices of blood testing for PFAS
- Create a monetary security internet for farmers whose lands are affected by PFAS
- Set up a medical monitoring reason behind motion and/or treatment for impacted residents
- Stopping future PFAS contamination.
- Prohibit the sale of all PFAS-containing merchandise besides when no safer different but exists — like in Maine and Vermont
- Codify Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s 2021 government directive ordering state businesses to restrict the state’s buy of merchandise that include PFAS
- Prohibit PFAS in meals packaging and meals contact supplies — like in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington
- Increasing PFAS testing and monitoring in each floor water our bodies and groundwater.
- Holding polluters accountable.
- Guarantee polluters are held financially accountable for cleansing up PFAS
- Reform the statute of limitations for submitting actions round PFAS and different contaminants
- Eliminating burdens on regulating PFAS.
- Enhance funding for regulatory businesses to hold out PFAS prevention, testing, monitoring and cleanup
- Repeal Michigan’s “no stricter than federal” regulation, which prohibits a state division from enacting guidelines extra stringent than these set by the federal authorities
- Repeal Michigan’s controversial “polluter panel” — Michigan’s Environmental Guidelines Evaluate Committee — which environmental advocates say hinders decision-making by state businesses
- Create a legislative PFAS Process Power
- Discovering options to wash up current air pollution.
- Ban incineration of PFAS waste, and so on.
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