Regan Announces Action on PFAS

EPA Administrator Michael Regan came home to North Carolina last week to announce the Biden Administration’s new actions to address PFAS contamination of water supply systems here and nationwide.

Regan said that the Administration is allocating $2 billion from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Act for grants to small and disadvantaged communities, to address PFAS and other emerging contaminants in their public water supplies. $62 million of that total is being directed to communities in North Carolina.

Maysville Investment

Regan chose a roundtable presentation in the small, poor, mostly Black town of Maysville in Jones County as the setting for the announcement. Maysville is using a $2.5 million grant to install the new filtration system on a new well to filter out high levels of PFAS pollution in its groundwater. As a small community system serving just 450 households, without the grant Maysville would have to ante up an average of $2,500 per household from a low-income community. The new system is scheduled to start providing much cleaner water to the community this spring. (In the meantime, the town has had to pay for emergency supply from Jones County.) 

“I’ve had countless conversations with people from all different backgrounds and I’ve heard time and time again about how our nation’s aging water infrastructure has directly impacted people’s lives,” said Regan. “Let’s be clear, clean water is essential for all life on Earth. It’s fundamental for healthy people, thriving communities and productive agriculture. Yet too many people in this country lack access to safe, affordable, and reliable drinking water systems. Too many communities are grappling with the impacts of pollution and other emerging contaminants. And too many communities have been left to face these challenges alone.” 

State of the Union

The Regan visit was part of a series of nationwide stops by Biden Cabinet officials last week following the State of the Union address, to highlight actions being taken to address major issues like environmental injustice. Vice President Kamala Harris went to Minnesota to highlight benefits such as cleaner school buses being delivered through Clean Energy Plan funding from the Inflation Reduction Act. “As the administration fans out across the country, Minnesota is a prime example of the positive impact of new climate action,” commented League of Conservation Voters (LCV) Senior Vice President Tiernan Sittenfeld. “As Vice President Harris [pointed out], Minnesotans can breathe easier with more electric school buses on their streets, and a new landmark 100% clean energy plan on the books. State and federal investments in clean energy, jobs, and a healthier future are having a direct, positive impact on people’s lives. This is the action on climate, justice, and jobs that voters demanded–and it’s only the beginning.”

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