Earlier this year, North Carolina’s Department of Environmental Quality proposed a new rule to the Environmental Management Commission’s Groundwater Committee to set the groundwater standards for PFOA and PFOS at a combined allowed level of 70 parts per trillion (or 0.07 parts per billion). Currently, there are no standards for PFOS, and the interim standard for PFOA established in 2006 is 2,000 parts per trillion. As of July 2020, the EMC has not set the proposed rule for public notice and hearing.
On August 10, 2020, the N.C. Attorney General announced a formal investigation into PFAS contamination in North Carolina. This follows NCDEQ’s complaint in 2017 against Chemours Company FC, LLC alleging violations of N.C. water quality laws arising out of the discharge of PFAS including GenX, which prompted the parties to enter a consent order in 2019. In May 2020, over 200 residents near the Chemours factory filed a federal lawsuit alleging contamination of their property and water supplies.
It’s clear that North Carolina is eager to further regulate PFAS, but hasn’t found a solution everyone can agree on yet.