PFAS Contamination: Evolving State and Federal Regulatory Landscape, Science, Litigation, and Due Diligence in Transactions

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A


Conducted on Thursday, October 31, 2019

Recorded event now available

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Program Materials

This CLE webinar will guide environmental law counsel on the evolving federal and state regulatory landscape related to perfluoroalkyl or polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) providing updates to recent legislative and regulatory changes at both the Federal and State level and discuss evaluating and addressing PFAS risks in transactions. The panel will also examine ongoing litigation and the legal risks facing companies using and discharging PFAS in manufacturing as well as companies distributing or selling products containing PFAS.

Description

As U.S. EPA continues to work through its regulatory process for PFAS, it appears the agency and Congress continue to be committed to additional, future regulation of PFAS under CERCLA, the Clean Water Act, the Safe Drinking Water Act, and the Toxic Substances Control Act. This broad class of over 4000 chemicals is widely used in numerous consumer products such as carpets, fast food packaging, textiles, and firefighting foam.

Responding to considerable pressure and concerns from citizens and political leaders, state regulators are also imposing new drinking water limits, cleanup standards, and testing requirements for PFAS and are moving much more swiftly in their regulation of these compounds. State regulators and citizen groups are also suing the primary manufacturers of PFAS and secondary users, seeking damages ranging from cleanup costs to future medical monitoring costs.

As a result of the increased PFAS regulation and litigation, companies and their environmental counsel must carefully conduct due diligence and consider the risks and potential costs of future litigation and remediation arising from the sale, distribution and use, and disposal of PFAS. Also, many industrial and municipal sectors are or will soon be facing new regulations and standards with regard to managing materials and waste that typically contain PFAS such as leachate at landfills, dilute low concentrations in drinking water sources, and concentrations in compost and waste water treatment plant (WWTP) influent, discharge waters, and resultant sludge. Counsel should understand what PFAS are, who and what companies are most likely to be brought into PFAS-related litigation, which clients may need to address PFAS in the near future, and how best to evaluate and mitigate PFAS risks.

Listen as our authoritative panel examines the evolving federal and state regulatory landscape for PFAS. The group will discuss current scientific data on PFAS including a review of the basis in which regulatory standards are being developed, opportunities and challenges to determining the source of PFAS contamination (“forensic analysis”), business sectors and regions where PFAS is or may soon be a regulatory focus, and new regulations and ongoing litigation. The panel will offer insight into the legal risks facing companies using and discharging PFAS in manufacturing, companies distributing or selling products containing PFAS, and companies and municipalities responding to PFAS contamination in groundwater, drinking water, and waste. The panel will also examine PFAS risks in transactions and what companies and their counsel need to do regarding evaluating and addressing this emerging risk.

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Outline

  1. Regulatory developments
    1. EPA
    2. States
  2. Legal risks of PFAS and litigation
    1. Using and discharging PFAS in manufacturing processes
    2. Distributing or selling products containing PFAS
    3. Using firefighting foam at airports and fire training facilities
    4. Releasing PFAS from wastewater treatment facilities and in landfill leachate
  3. PFAs risks in transactions
    1. Regulatory
    2. Litigation

Benefits

The panel will review these and other essential issues:

  • What should companies and counsel do to ensure compliance with differing state standards for PFAS?
  • What new federal regulation of PFAS is EPA considering?
  • What types of legal claims are PFAS defendants facing from government and private litigation?
  • What steps should environmental counsel take to minimize the litigation and regulatory risk of PFAS in transactions?

Faculty

Abell, Russell
Russell Abell, P.G., LSP

Vice President
Sanborn Head & Associates

Mr. Abell has over 20 years of experience nationally focusing on hydrogeology and fate and transport analysis. His...  |  Read More

Kray, Jeff
Jeff B. Kray

Partner
Marten Law

Mr. Kray’s practice focuses on water quality, water resources, and complex environmental litigation, including...  |  Read More

Thurlow, Matthew
Matthew D. Thurlow

Partner
BakerHostetler

Mr. Thurlow is an environmental litigator with significant experience in environmental matters brought under the Clean...  |  Read More

Zemba, Stephen
Stephen Zemba, Ph.D., P.E.

Project Director
Sanborn Head & Associates

Dr. Zemba has over three decades of experience nationally as an environmental consulting specialist in the area of...  |  Read More

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