In the March 3, 2021 Federal Register (Fed Reg_Reg Det PFAS_2021-03-03) the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published its final Regulatory Determination for eight contaminants that were listed on the fourth Contaminant Candidate List (CCL4). In the final Regulatory Determination EPA will proceed to regulate two PFAS: perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA). As part of the final Regulatory Determination, EPA will not regulate 1,1-dichloroethane, acetochlor, methyl bromide (bromomethane), metolachlor, nitrobenzene, and RDX.
EPA has 24 months to publish for public comment proposed Maximum Contaminant Level Goals (MCLG) and MCLs for PFOA and PFOS. Following that deadline, EPA has 18 months to publish final MCLGs and MCLs.
Under the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) Amendments of 1996, every five years EPA is to make a Regulatory Determination (a decision whether or not to proceed with developing a drinking water regulation) for at least five constituents from the CCL. Constituents are included on the CCL that “…are not subject to any proposed or promulgated national primary drinking water regulation, which are known or anticipated to occur in public water systems, and which may require regulation….” The CCL4 was published in November 2016.
In February 2020 EPA published the proposed CCL4 Regulatory Determination (to regulate PFOA and PFOS) for public comment.
The final Regulatory Determination was signed by the previous EPA Administrator on January 15, 2021 and submitted to the Government Printing Office. As of January 20, 2021 the final Regulatory Determination had not been published in the Federal Register. On January 20, 2021 the Biden Administration issued a Regulatory Freeze (to allow for additional review) for regulations that had been signed but not yet published in the Federal Register. That included the Regulatory Determination in today’s Federal Register.