PENNSYLVANIA – A study by the U.S. Geological Survey conducted in partnership with the PA Department of Environmental Protection found that water samples from 161 PA rivers and streams were tested and 76% of the studied streams contained chemicals knowns as PFAS. Often referred to as “forever chemicals,” PFAS are a group of more than 12,000 synthetic chemicals used in a wide variety of common applications, from the linings of fast-food boxes and non-stick cookware to fire-fighting foams and other purposes. High concentrations of some PFAS may lead to adverse health risks in people. Their persistence in the environment and prevalence across the country make them a unique water-quality concern. The water samples containing PFAS were also analyzed to determine the possible sources of the environmentally persistent chemicals. Authors of the study were able to determine electronics manufacturing and water pollution control facilities were top PFAS sources in urban areas of PA, while combined sewage overflows located near oil and gas development were possible sources in rural areas across the state.You can access the full report of the study by clicking on the picture below. The study results are critical to determine the best practices that can mitigate surface water contamination and potential exposure to humans, as well as a wide range of aquatic species residing in the surface waters of PA.