PFAS Emerging Regulations
KUB is proud to provide high quality water to its customers through stringent monitoring and testing at its state-certified water quality laboratory. KUB has taken a proactive approach in establishing an interdepartmental team of industry professionals focused on emerging regulations and technologies.
This team is charged with observing the regulatory and technological landscape, developing science-based communications for the community to stay informed, and keeping KUB leadership apprised of upcoming regulatory changes. The team closely watches both state and federal decision-making and keeps open communication with regulators. KUB follows guidance set forth by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC).
Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS)
PFAS are long-lasting chemicals with components that break down very slowly over time found in water, air, fish, and soil around the world. Because PFAS are so widespread and persistant, most people have been exposed to PFAS, as they are present at low levels in a variety of food products and in the environment.
The EPA is currently studying how to better detect PFAS in air, water, soil, fish, and other wildlife. According to the EPA, there are thousands of different PFAS, some of which have been more widely used and studied. Learn more about EPA's current understanding of PFAS here.
In October 2021, the EPA announced its PFAS Strategic Roadmap, which lays out its approach to addressing PFAS. This includes future regulation under the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA).
Find more information from the EPA here.
EPA Health Advisories
(Look at talking points to draft)
PFAS & KUB
KUB routinely participates in analyzing for unregulated constituents under the EPA's Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR), and in prior monitoring cycles, there have been no detections of PFAS compounds in the drinking water that KUB provides to our customers at the detection levels available at the time.
As technology continuously improves, analytical methods can detect compounds at lower and lower concentrations – currently some PFAS compounds can be detected as low as 2 parts per trillion (ppt). One part per trillion is equivalent to 1 second in nearly 32,000 years, for comparison.
KUB is currently preparing to participate in the latest unregulated monitoring cycle in 2024, in which the EPA has made an effort to include and expand monitoring for 29 PFAS compounds.
KUB has also done some voluntary monitoring of our source water and had no detections of the PFAS compounds that are currently of concern. In addition, KUB maintains a Source Water Protection Team and Program in which KUB annually evaluates who and what is upstream of its water treatment plant and identifies any risks to our source water.