Sen. Gary Peters’ PFAS provisions included in final National Defense Bill

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WASHINGTON, D.C. (WJMN)- U.S. Sen. Gary Peters is continuing the fight against the use of PFAS and its harm to the environment.

Peters announced Tuesday that the final national defense bill agreed to by negotiators from the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives, includes provisions he authored and cosponsored to address PFAS contamination in Michigan and across the country.

The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) sets policy for the Department of Defense and the military’s use of PFAS.

Local 3 News had the chance to speak with the senator and he said one of those provisions is stopping the use of PFAS chemicals in firefighting foams.

“We’re going to make stronger efforts to keep PFAS from getting into the environment in the first place. We’re also going to expand testing so people can know whether or not they are subjected to PFAS contamination from sites that may be located near their homes in Michigan. It’ll also force the federal government, and the military, in particular, to more aggressively come up with a more comprehensive plan to deal with contamination when it is discovered,” said Peters.

The bill also includes a provision to authorize $2 million for advanced computer modeling to improve the understanding of PFAS. When we asked Senator Peters about the spending, he says the value comes from how much faster it will make research.

“Quantum computing also is ideally suited to modeling chemical reactions because it’s based on quantum mechanics. Many folks believe quantum computing will be able to unlock many of the mysteries that currently exist when it comes to chemicals interacting in the broader environment. In fact, studies and analysis that may take years can be reduced to perhaps just a matter of months,” said Peters.

Other provisions by Peters:

  • preventing the use of PFAS-laden firefighting foams in training exercises
  • increasing coordination on PFAS remediation efforts, data between the Department of Defense and States
  • increasing coordination on PFAS remediation efforts, data between the Department of Defense and States
  • developing new technologies to detect PFAS, adding PFAS to the EPA’s toxic release inventory, helping farms impacted by PFAS from military sites:

Congress will vote on the bill later this week before it goes to the President to be signed into law.

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