Peters Statement on EPA’s PFAS Meeting in Michigan

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Gary Peters (MI) today released the following statement regarding a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) roundtable meeting in Kalamazoo regarding Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) contamination:

“The scripted, invite-only format for today’s PFAS meeting lacks any meaningful opportunity for Michigan residents who have been exposed to toxic chemicals to make their voices heard. Last week, Michiganders traveled all the way to Washington, DC and filled a Senate hearing room because this crisis has had a devastating impact on their lives.  It’s stunning to me that this meeting – billed as public outreach and held in Michigan – fails to provide the public with the opportunity to speak and to be heard. 

“Over the last several months, EPA held PFAS community engagement meetings across the country, and each one included a time for public comment. Michiganders deserve that same opportunity.”

Last month, following reports of a cancelled community engagement meeting in Michigan, Senators Peters and Debbie Stabenow called on the EPA to hold a community engagement meeting in Michigan that provided an opportunity for the public to provide direct input. During a Senate Subcommittee hearing last week examining PFAS exposure and contamination, which was held at Peters’ request, EPA’s witness Dr. Peter Grevatt testified that he expected the agency would afford an opportunity for the public to participate in a community engagement event in Michigan.

PFAS are a group of approximately 4,700 toxic chemicals that have emerged across communities in Michigan that have been linked to cancer as well as a wide variety of thyroid, kidney, liver, heart, reproductive and autoimmune problems.